Oktoberfest in Old City I when steins make you smile


Life in Tennessee is different, and beautiful in its own way. The landscapes of the Smoky Mountains and the Big South Fork are gorgeous, the people of East Tennessee have a big heart and Knoxville is a stunning city that proves will, power and potential. I really feel at home here and right now it’s just the place for us. If someone asks me if I’m missing something, my answer usually is that I would like to see our family and friends more often. Whether I really miss something is kind of difficult to say. Homesickness is relatively alien to me. I appreciate my home country Germany and even more from afar. If I had to actually define the things I miss, it would be those that are hidden in details and that are kind of hard to find.

Last Saturday, I’ve noticed something that I’m missing, something tiny and something that’s kind of funny: I’m missing typical beer glasses *! I had the chance to be the photographer at an event, the wonderful Oktoberfest in Old City. The Old City Association and the German brewery Schulz Bräu have managed to bring a piece of Munich right into the city center of Knoxville. The first 1000 visitors even got a small gift, a beer mug (a stein) and a free beer. And that’s exactly where I noticed it: The image of thousand people with beer mugs in their hand, wandering around in the sunshine, enjoying a delicious pretzel and having fun has, in an interesting way, really touched me. I had to grin at myself for how much this detail, the beer mug, simply delighted me.

In the last few days, I thought a lot about whether I would like to see more different, special beer glasses like the typical beer mug here in the USA. I concluded that I actually don’t want that. It was nice last Saturday, and it worked perfectly with the Oktoberfest theme. However, it’s OK that things are different here in Tennessee. That makes it something special in Germany, something worth missing.

So, if you raise your glass next time, then enjoy having your pint glass in Tennessee, the wheat beer glass in Bavaria or the bowl in Belgium. These subtleties are what makes every place special and adorable. So, let’s toast to all the little differences, to our love for them and to the wisdom that missing things sometimes is a really nice feeling: PROST!


* In America, you usually get your beer in a pint, so a cone-shaped glass.