Roland Dürre
Tuesday October 2nd, 2012

Soccer in Haching – The Spielvereinigung!

II am a soccer player (Fußballer) who is quite serious about his hobby, both actively and passively. In my life, the football ground is of fundamental importance, just like the Rosenau Stadium used to be. And even today, I am very happy to join my friends for a game or two.

When I was a child, the worst that could happen to me was not being able to see a home-game of the BCA (Ballspiel Club Augsburg). In 1969, the BCA and the Schwaben (TSV 1847 Schwaben Augsburg) merged. The result was the “retort club”: FCA. That was when a great tradition ceased to exist for me. Additionally, I left my home town, thus becoming homeless as far as soccer was concerned.

It took years before I discovered the SpVgg Unterhaching, which is quite close to the InterFace AG headquarters. A new soccer-love developed. Ever since then, I have been taking regular trips to the Grünau and later to the Sports Park with my small and big children.

Here is a current picture of last Sunday’s game “SpVgg Unterhaching – Kickers Offenbach”. Unfortunately, we lost 0:3; the bad luck literally stuck with the Haching soccer boots. Of course, I was there and suffered with them.

In the Sports Park, we already experienced many great matches and numerous rises. In 1999/2000, we suddenly found ourselves in the Federal League. And, like many of my friends, I still very well remember that legendary own goal in the 21st minute on May, 20th, 2000.  The then still “Leverkusener” Ballack scored it with his heel, thereby helping Haching to win the match and Bayern München to win the German Championship.

Here are the stands where I sit and watch every home game if possible at all. And, of course, mostly I can cheer, because at home, the SpVgg is a power that almost always wins!

Since the year 2000, many things have happened. There were ups and downs. In between, we Haching fans suffered quite a bit. But since last year, we are really on the way up. Before the season 2011/2012 started, the old board of presidents initiated a radical change. The new team around Manfred (Manni) Schwabl rigorously executed the changes and even improved on them.

Together with the new managing directors Markus Sieger and Florian Rensch, the new president gave the club a totally new look. Chapeaux! They built a young team with players exclusively from our region.  The team of coaches around Claus Schromm and Manuel Baum and supported by Florian Ernst made this group into a team that plays truly young, fresh magic soccer. Just like Borussia Dortmund does in the Federal League.

Besides the technical competence, the character of the players was an important criterion for being selected to play in the team when it was recruiting time. And now you can see immediately how they move up. Now, all of a sudden, the SpVgg Unterhaching  – with the by far lowest budget of all – plays at the top of the Third League. Still, we will remain humble, knowing full well that all that matters this year is to consolidate our place in the Third League.

But we look forward to the future. Sticking to the three “Success-C’s“ as formulated by the famous sports professor and counsellor Dr. Alfons Madeja,  ours seems a good course: thanks to the high competence of the active and responsible team around Manni Schwabl and a clear, humble and well-thought-out concept, the necessary capital will also soon arrive.

Incidentally, my small Isetta also likes its trips to the Sports Park for watching soccer. Consequently, I would like to ask you to do the same and come and watch our home games at the Sports Park! You will see dream soccer. And both the team and the management really deserve more spectators!


(Translated by EG)


Both soccer pictures were taken by Stefan Kukral (Eventfotografie Kukral, Ringstrasse 163, 82041 Oberhaching). The Isetta sitting in front of the Sports Park was photographed by Johannes Nauman of InterFace AG.

This is the first time I visit this “new country“. It originated with the voluntary and peaceful separation of “Czechia” from “Slovakia”. I already experienced Slovakia during several bike tours, among others that to the “Black Sea“. The Czech Republic, however, is totally new territory for me!

We are staying in a rural area and the radius of our outings is limited because of the means of transportation we chose: horse-drawn wagons and bicycles. Consequently, the impressions we get will not be suitable standard models.

Without exception, we met very friendly and always helpful people. Often, it was hard to communicate, regardless of the area we are travelling through having formerly been bi-lingual (Czech and German) and the fact that the places are described in Wikipedia under their former German names.

Here, only very few people speak German. Even among the younger persons, trying English or French is not much of a success. It seems that the education at school in this region is basically restricted to one language.
On our first evening, we found a restaurant that had not closed (which was no easy thing). Ordering dinner was even more difficult.

But it seems that many Anglicisms found their way into the Czech language, such as “Kola” and “Pommfrits”. Thus, at least the children, daughter Maresa (16 years old) and her girl-friend Susanne (18 years old), were able to order something familiar on this first dinner of theirs in the foreign country.
The three “grown-ups” (Gudrun from Stralsund, Barbara and yours truly) ordered their dinner blindly and were pleasantly surprised to see what they were brought.

We were, for instance, brought “fried dumpling slices with cheese” or “baked cheese with potatoes”. But it was virtually impossible to order salad. I have no idea if this was because they did not understand what we said or because they just did not have it.

If you come from a EURO country, you will find the country very economically priced. That is perhaps even more true for persons from southern European countries than for Germans. You can feed five persons in a small restaurant for 600 Czech Crowns, which equals about 25 Euros.  Two months ago, we ate pizza at Palermo for even more than it would have cost in the “high-price country” Bavaria.

Mind you, we are talking this price even though the three “grown-ups“ each had two half litres of the Gambrinus we already knew from the Pilsen railway station and the two kids each had a “Czech Kola”. It seems that countries with their own currency always still have their own local Kola. It is also cheaper than the imported equivalent.

Yet the incomes seem to be so low that life is all but cheap for the people. By their standards, prices in shops like Lidl, Billa and Kaufland (all owned by “western” concerns) are very high.

The shops we saw most often were the “Konzum” shops. So it seems that some of the commerce is still Czech owned.

Our farm is owned and run by a Swiss couple. They keep the compound small on purpose. On a very large area, all you will find is five covered wagons for guests. Four of them are occupied by families with several small or fairly young children. Consequently, everything is very agreeable and straightforward.

Behind the camp, you will find a biggish lake where you can go for a swim and steer a boat.

Today, we plan a long tour (15 kilometres) and Barbara, our coachman, will be permitted to drive the wagon by herself, with just a little help by the rest of us. And tomorrow, we will go on to another camp – where we will spend the night.

(Translated by EG)

This article was created with self-produced solar energy, provided by the very nice Czech sun. I got some extra inspiration from a cup of Becherova.
And here is the link to the horse camp!

Roland Dürre
Thursday May 24th, 2012

The Demise of the Bicycle

Yesterday, I had an appointment in Pasing. In Google Maps, it said that it is about 20 kilometres from Unterhaching to my destination. Consequently, I started out early enough.

Of course I, again, arrived too early at the meeting point, the Pasing-Arcaden. I had more than 20 minutes at my disposal. Then I saw a note telling me that there was an exhibition “History of the Velo” (Geschichte des Velos) at the Pasing Arkaden. Well, that sounded tempting. Incidentally, I can highly recommend this exhibition. You will find beautiful objects and informative texts.

However, the exhibition will close after May, 25th – that is tomorrow. So you would have to be quick if you want to go and see it. For me, the most interesting thing was information about the role the bicycle played after the war.

It was about the decline in the use of bicycles during the 1950ies and 1960ies, regardless of the fact that it was definitely de facto superior to all other means of transportation – and not just in the city.

They identified two main reasons for this demise:

  • Riding a bike is how the poor practice mobility!
    In times of the German economic miracle, motorization was synonymous for wealth. Owning a motorbike or later a mini car – not to mention the limousine – was a symbol for prosperity. I can only assume that it was either the consequence of superior marketing technology, or else of a newly developed attitude towards life prevalent in the now economic miracle country Germany. Probably a little of both.
  • Riding a bike will only give you technological problems!
    It said that one of the main reasons for this is that people often buy cheap bicycles as offered by department stores and discount markets. Those are (naturally) low quality, but still they are bought more often than the real quality bicycles. And then all you get is technological problems.

Well, who would volunteer for this: being considered poor and having nothing but technological problems!

Again, you see the mechanism. Marketing creates values and emotions and then the cheap cult is executed. Eventually, this is detrimental for all of us.

(Translated by EG)


I took the picture from the central media archive Wikimedia Commons.

Roland Dürre
Tuesday December 27th, 2011

Climbing Stairs

I have a friend who thinks and behaves a little like myself. Wherever possible, he goes places by bike or uses public transportation. He has no car. He differs from me in that he works for the State of Bavaria, which supplied him with a great office. It is situated nicely at in beautiful part of the Capitol City of Bavaria. His office is on the fourth floor.

As a matter of principle, he always climbs the stairs when he has to go up to his office. Otherwise, he also walks a lot and rides his bike frequently. Besides skiing, however, he basically is not into sports.

My friend has a very nice boss, who always goes places by car. At home, he has an underground parking place. You could say his life brings him from underground parking to underground parking, from multi-storey parkhouse to multi-storey parkhouse. Every day of the year, all the year round.

Of course, he also always takes the lift to get from the underground parking space to his office – which is also on the fourth floor.

Said boss lives very conscientiously. He is careful about what he eats and regularly exercises. For him, this is a very serious thing, so he also visits the fitness centre twice a week. Whenever he is there, he very diligently works out, monotired at scientific standard.

A short time ago, my friend managed to persuade his boss not to use the lift after lunch. Instead, they both walked the stairs from the ground floor to the fourth floor.

They had just reached the third floor and the boss was totally winded already. …

🙂 Well, this is just an anecdote to make you smile.

(Translated by EG)

Roland Dürre
Tuesday October 11th, 2011

Chaos at Munich MVV

Yesterday morning, it seems that there was, once again, total chaos at the Munich MVV. I read about traffic hold-ups at Marienplatz.

Allegedly, the S-Bahn trains only came at irregular intervals and late until noontime. And thousands of commuters experienced massive delays.

In the AZ , you can read all about the reasons. It is an absolutely readable article, even though from a ”tabloid paper“.

The tiniest reasons are enough to cause a delay. For instance, an underground train signal that kept signalling “RED”. And at the S-Bahn trains, someone collapsed on the main line. Both incidents were enough to cause a public transport infarct.

Tonight, Germany will play against Belgium. A soccer game. If one of the players gets hurt – even if seriously – he will be carried from the playground on a stretcher. The match will continue.

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Roland Dürre
Sunday October 9th, 2011

What is Truly Important!

Well, on this Sunday, I could easily write about the Federal Troyan Virus they just discovered, couldn’t I (ARD). Here is the experts’ opinion: poorly protected and against the law. Except: who ever doubted that these kinds of things exist? And that such a Federal Troyan Virus was not constructed well is also no surprise, is it? And who cares what is illegal these days? Certainly not our Federal Government.

Alternatively, I could write about the rescue of the banks in France. After all, the French banks are said to have such huge amounts of Greek borrowings that they would go bankrupt in case of a Greek bankruptcy, anyway. And now they are next in line to get a protective shield. But, hey, I thought Greece was currently being rescued by a protective shield, anyway. And allegedly, the EZB bought up foul Greek borrowings a long time ago, thanks to their French president. Which considerably annoyed the German banks.

But that, too, is all just nonsense. No sensible person is interested in this kind of thing any more. As I see it, this disinterest is justified. The system got less and less personal and developed a life of its own. All we can do is wait and see what happens, squeeze through the gaps where possible and organize ethically well-based resistance against the current amorality.

Consequently, I follow the example of our IF blog author Sabine (2s) and write about the really important things in life – shoes!
Well, it seems like I strip naked in front of my readers, tell them my most private secrets and come out:

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Sabine Sammer
Saturday October 8th, 2011

(Deutsch) Die Qual der Wahl …

Sorry, this entry is only available in German.

🙂 This is another leg of the journey where all that needs to be said is basically that it was, again, wonderful. As usual, the weather was great. I guess my dear readers might actually feel a little bored with the same old story every day.

For a change, we had to find our way without our ”guide on paper“. Thanks to the map and GPS, we found quite a nice route. We even managed to avoid some streets with very high motor traffic.

We almost always rode on small, paved country roads. We made excellent progress and enjoyed two rests on the way:

One consisted of a nice snack for an early lunch with perfect Italian ice-cream at the bar of a Pamalata production firm. In the early afternoon, we took a second break at the restaurant you see on the picture.

Eventually, it was early enough in the afternoon at Cáorle for us to (successfully) look for a hotel and then go down to the beach.

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There is not much to report about our last leg. I will just let the pictures tell their own story.

We knew Udine from Sunday night when we arrived in the dark. In the morning, before we departed, we strolled a little through the city centre. It is no problem at all to stroll through a city by bike. And it is always worth the effort.

And then we started the last “official“ leg of our bike tour. The weather was just as always: we started with summer termperatures.
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This Friday, which is the last day of September, the Hotel Alpenland at St. Johann i.P. serves a really delicious breakfast. I wonder why cheese and meat always taste so delicious when we are vacationing in Austria, Italy or Switzerland.

Is it the vagabond life? Or are victuals in those countries really better than at home? Perhaps because we economize ourselves to death in Germany?

Just like we Germans are so particularly industrious that the rest of Europe can not keep up with us?

Well, back to my vacation diary:
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