I used to wait in excitement for World Cups (and Euros), which were perhaps the only thing to do when you were on school holidays. But things have changed. Euro’08 was the first major football event that I missed. I needed to wake up early for work, and it was simply impossible to watch all matches. And I guess I will miss this year’s World Cup as well. And it would be a full contrast with the 2006 World Cup. I was doing my intern in München, and Deutschland, was the host of der Weltmeisterschaft (in short, WM).
It was really memorable. I went to the Allianz Arena, where the opening match was played (if I remembered correctly, it was Germany vs. Costa Rica). I didn’t get the ticket, of course, but I just wanted to feel the atmosphere. It was fun. There were even Peruvian supporters, even though Peru didn’t qualify for the tournament (must be the immigrants). Then I made my move to my friend’s house to watch the match. It would be pretty tragic if I kept waiting outside the stadium during the opening match.
And I followed the WM faithfully. It was easier to do so, especially if the earliest match started at 12pm, and the latest at 9pm. So goodbye to those 3am matches. Even when you were working, you could know that Germany scored a goal when suddenly a noise started to erupt out of nowhere (ok, from the pubs). Sometimes I went to the Olympiapark, as well, where it held public screenings of the matches. The envious feeling at my friend who got a ticket to Brazil-Australia second round match in München. And to spend my last night in Germany watching the final match with my church friends before I had to say tschüß and auf Wiedersehen. Good times, indeed.
And, finally, the trip to Augsburg about two months before the WM. So there was a tour of the cup in the cities of Germany. Augsburg was the nearest one from München (around one hour trip with train), so I went over there when the cup was displayed in Augsburg. We queued to see the cup and take our picture with it (could not touch it or else a security guard would beat you up). It was pretty surreal at that time. It was the cup.