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Overall, Munich is a very clean, orderly and safe place to live and enjoy. The sheer orderliness made it most unusual and interesting to witness a police action on the street. One nice evening, there I was enjoying a local Augustiner beer (and a Montecristo cigar) at a table on the sidewalk.  A group of three 20-somethings came walking down the street and a young woman, who had already had much too much to drink, was yelling and generally making a scene. As she walked by the tables on the street, this street urchin was yelling at the patrons and kicking the tables.  A man yelled back at her, the woman and her friends continued down the street and her general meltdown continued. About 30 meters further she had another outburst, falling into a sign and causing it to fall into a parked car. Uh-oh, order broken.

Almost silently, the polizei arrived. In force. Three cars. No sirens. Officers fanned out and inquired of the patrons what had happened? They took information and generally secured the area. Without getting right into the middle of it all, it was kind of hard to determine what was going to happen. I started to think that she would be spirited away to some sort of detention center or drunk tank to dry out. For some reason, I had this vision of Oompa-Loompas coming, the way they took Violette Beauregarde away to the Juicing Room to squeeze her before she exploded like a fat blueberry in Willy Wonka.Oompa-Loompas

After about 20 minutes, the police dispersed and the street was back to normal. I finished my beer and got up to make my way back home. Where was the street urchin? Alas, the Oompa-Loompas did not take her away. She was still sitting on the sidewalk, somewhat calmer, and being comforted by her friends. I wouldn’t want to get that bill in the morning.

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