By OnMilwaukee Staff Writers   Published Oct 11, 2013 at 5:36 PM
I don't think I could live here. My mood disorder would be lit up all the time. Everywhere you look, it's die die die, the German word for "the." It's a constant morbid preposition.
Not being able to shake off the fatigue that's snowballing after another long drive, I pull out the iPad for something to do. Last night, it was two sets at a sound production warehouse turned nightclub. 
Our host, Gunter (sorry, can't find my umlaut; I seem to have misplaced it) is an affable, talkative and animated man. Proud of his beer belly, which looks good on him, his favorite gesture is a slap of the tummy. He does this a couple times during the course of the evening, and I have to say, it works for him! He is married to a very pretty Thai woman. She is wonderfully busy all night, making sure everybody is happy and comfy, always with the broadest, beaming smile I have ever seen.
Now, let's talk about German crowds. They clap after every song and seem to enjoy it thoroughly, but when you are playing, they are a picture of stillness. No emotion seems to animate their stony eyes. Give me a blank slate, and I'll always paint the grimmest picture, which I do. So it's like this: At the end of every song, it's a love fest, but during I feel like a pork chop at the butcher's shop being inspected by a wary customer.
We have experienced wonderful hospitality at all the venues, but last night was over the top. Gunter's mom, who I think he said was 86, made a hearty bean soup with sausage and a salad of tomatoes, cukes, and red and green peppers served with a homemade creamy dill. The dinner was devoured with gusto, the travelers needing a little restorative gluttony.
Unfortunately, today we are hauling ourselves to another far-off venue, this time to a place near the Czech border. I'm trying to enjoy the short bursts of tourism that we get at each stop, but this is a grind. Romantic as it sounded to me when Greg first mentioned it, it is long and hard trip. We have some time off on Saturday in Copenhagen, where I estimate we will have about 3,500 kilometers (I call them European miles) behind us.
Greg and Dylan are already asleep in the van. They are terrifically talented at ignoring the stops, starts and swerves Klaus specilaizes in. Greg is in an unlikely posture, with arms crossed and head drooped forward, a trick he has trained himself to do. I will try to steal a wink or two, but right now it's hopeless as I wait for the ibuprofen to do what it's supposed to and try to ignore the constant die die die.