Vando's 2006 World Cup Diary
A round the world journey to watch the Aussies in Germany 2006, taking in Central America and Southern Africa along the way
by Grant Vandenberg
London to Frankfurt doesn´t look that far on a map, but after heading out of the London flat at 8.30am and getting into Frankfurt at 3.30pm via planes, trains and automobiles it was a decent hike.
I didn´t realise it then, but I still had another 9 hours before I would see my bed that night.
After picking up my match tickets at the Sheraton, I was told to go to the Aussie bar in Frankfurt and then get a transfer to my hostel. The tour is being run by an Aussie tour company called the Fanatics, where it appears the first priority is beer and the ninth priority is tour organisation.
I was told to walk to my hostel at Holschpeyer just across the river, a mere 15 minutes away. It didn´t feel quite right so when I asked where Holschpeyer was at an information desk, the guy said it was 100km away. I figured this was too far to walk so I headed for the train station.
At 9.30pm the train rocked into Holschpeyer, a one horse town not far from Kaiserslauten. I stumbled towards the hostel but got side tracked in a pub where I watched Portugal beat Angola 1-0 with a few Aussies and some very pissed Germans..
Finally at midnight I found the hostel and went to my bed. Or beds. One giant room jam packed with 25 mattresses layed out on the floor side by side, surrounded by 24 farting, snoring and stinking Australians.
It was not a great nights sleep. The bloke next to me (literally 30cm away) was coughing and spluttering all night. And when I woke up in the middle of the night and found myself spooning the bloke on the other side of me, I decided I´d seek alternative arrangements the next day.
Welcome to Germany....World Cup 206.....Bring it on!