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September 1995 (continued):

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That evening I flew to from Nuremberg to Berlin, where the next day I enjoyed a return visit with Rik de Lisle, Ulrich Gathmann, Ralf Molfil and the air staff of r.s.2

After the seminar, I flew back to Hamburg, where a disc jockey from Delta Radio picked me up. He had been assigned the task of driving me to the station’s home of Kiel, roughly 100 kilometers away.

It was raining pretty heavily during the drive, and the DJ was in a hurry to get back. As the car reached 200 kilometers per hour he asked if it was too fast for me.

“Not as long as it’s safe,” I replied.

“Oh, it’s very safe,” he assured me. “This car is equipped with two air bags.”

That wasn’t exactly what I meant by safe. But he did get me to the small, charming hotel where I had just enough time to sleep before working with Adam Hahne and his crew in the morning.

Now, I am quite used to the phenomenon of radio people who are so caught up in the business that they can stay up all night talking about it. Or those who spend all of their vacation time listening to other stations. And radio programmers & jocks certainly are used to very long workdays.

But this was a first: We worked from 9 o’clock in the morning until 6:00 in the evening….without a lunch break. I hadn’t had time that morning to eat breakfast, and as soon as we finished I was driven in a mad rush (we barely made it) back to the airport in Hamburg.

Which meant I worked — i.e., stood & talked — for nine hours without any food to sustain me. (I’ll now pause for one minute while everyone reading this marvels at my ability to survive such an ordeal.)

Arriving at Frankfurt Airport, I took a taxi to a nearby hotel to spend the night before flying home the following morning. As the taxi driver put my bags in the trunk, I said, “Queens Hotel.”

He looked up at me, shook his head and said, “Shuttle bus.”

I took this to mean he was suggesting I wait for a shuttle that would pass by the hotel. I had no desire to wait; my desire was to sleep.

“No, danke. I prefer a taxi.”

“Shuttle bus,” he insisted.

“I don’t want the shuttle bus. Shall I take another taxicab?”

Clearly he wasn’t allowed to refuse a fare. And apparently he thought my fare wouldn’t be worth his while. Scowling, he slammed the trunk shut and we drove away

The fare was 25DM. I gave him 28DM. He returned three to me.

“No,” I explained, “that’s for you.”

Still scowling, he climb back into the taxi and drove away.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Joe Knapp December 4, 2009, 7:52 am

    Been there, done that! I LOVE Germany. But, during my 200 KPH ride, we were actually passed by a guy on a motorcycle! I admire your stubborn refusal to take the shuttle bus. Good for you! I’ve searched for a non-existant shuttle bus in Munich and I can tell you it’s not fun at all. If the all-work-no-food thing happens again, just stop and say, “Essen, bitte?” They’ll bring you a bratwurst and beer so you can work through lunch 😉

  • Bobby Ocean December 4, 2009, 8:19 am

    Many of my best Life Lessons have come from
    females that I have known. They taught me this cute little
    trick for getting almost anything – without saying one word;
    suddenly, people are all over you with sandwiches, beers,
    attention, you name it. I’ll teach it to you, DanO; use it next
    time you pull an All-Day-er. They call it “fainting.”

  • Mat Rix December 4, 2009, 1:12 pm

    Good one about the car ride mate!

  • Johnny Milford December 5, 2009, 6:28 am

    Had a similar taxi situation in SF – the driver seemed quite put out that we only wanted to be taken five blocks – in the pouring rain. Even after tipping him generously for his 3-minute waste of time, this cranky old man still scowled and drove away with not a word.