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Bavarian good times

entertainment Updated: Apr 10, 2010 01:43 IST
Abhinav Bindra
Abhinav Bindra
Hindustan Times
Bavaria

As I prepare to leave on a shooting trip for training and competition, I thought I’ll share some of my travel experiences over the past few years with you. Let me begin by saying that travelling for my sport can quite firmly be placed in the ‘painful’ category due to the endless clearances that are required for my guns! With the current security procedures at all airports —where even sneaking in a lighter past the x ray machine is a formidable task — you can imagine the formalities around a case full of rifles. Essentially, this necessitates that I be at the airport at least four to five hours ahead of an international flight and should that flight be delayed, well, suffice it to say that that’s how and where I discovered and developed my ability to meditate!



I simply hate all this, but have had to accept it and make my peace with the situation. Fortunately, I have made friends with several security agents and custom officers at many airports, and that’s definitely helped. I am headed to Munich and it happens to be my favourite city, and now a home away from home. In the last 10 years, I must have made close to a 100 trips to this amazing city. Ironically, for the first five years, I only saw the airport, my hotel room and the shooting range. Now, I have discovered the city now and am in love with it. I’ve even made a few friends there (starting from the custom agent who checks my guns!) and look forward to my trips!



The architecture, energy, Bavarian food and culture and of course…the beer! The people are friendly, they take a lot of pride in their heritage and they are also very precise and committed. My favourite eatery in Munich is predictably a Bavarian restaurant called Marienplatz. A glance through the menu and inevitably the Schwienne Bratten (when you learn to pronounce it) beckons. It is a divine concoction of crispy pork marinated in beer sauce... The Apple Strudel with vanilla sauce is soul stirring and the perfect reward for a good day’s shooting!



Having stayed at the same hotel since the last 10 years, I am well-acquainted with every member of the staff. Apparently, when I won the gold, they felicitated me in absentia, by having a happy hour with free drinks to celebrate the victory, or so I am told! So the next time you decide to experience a new city, give Munich a try. There is nothing beware(ian) about Bavaria. In fact, it is the perfect place to enjoy a series of GUTEN times !