I can’t tell you how often I walked over the footbridge in the image above. It must have been hundreds of times. Around the time when me and my friends were 20 years old, we did party hard. Every weekend and I don’t think we skipped one. We usually started at someones home, getting a couple of drinks but later we always went into a club. It was important to get to a decent level of drunkenness before we went into the club, because from that point on drinks would cost a lot more. So, it started at someones home, and on the way to the club. We usually walked to the club, and it took about an hour or less, depending on how fast we walked and what we experienced on the way. The bridge in the picture was basically the last landmark on our way, because from that point it was only 5 minutes to the club.
It’s not that we didn’t have money for a taxi, but we did rather spend it on drinks in the club. Apart from that we really liked the way to the club, because it was great to chat with the mates, and there was always a bit of shenanigans going on. We also met other strangers and flirted with womans. It happened quite a few times that someone got a new girlfriend on the way to the club (laugh). That’s far more interesting than taking the taxi. It became a tradition back then, like taking the first drinks with friends at home and making the plan, and then the most interesting part, hitting the road. The club was interesting too, but since music is quite loud in a club, it’s more about dancing and taking drinks. Chatting was possible, but you had to scream in front of someones ear. So, yeah, I think the way to the club was the most interesting part in my opinion.
The way back was usually more difficult. Most of us still didn’t want to pay for a taxi. We usually stayed until the club closed, and that was depending on the day usually between 6 and 8 AM. And since we were young and wanted to live the party life, it also meant being quite a bit sozzled. Even today that bridge still reminds me of zigzag walking. But hey, we were young (laugh). To be honest, two decades later I prefer my healthier life. Once in a while I still take a drink, but now it’s one or two beer every few months and not a night out with heavy drinking. But there is something I miss about this. Not the activity, but the mindset. We were young and didn’t feel any responsibilities, it was a pretty naive life but in a positive way. In a way we’ve still been kids, just 20 years old kids. Problems were still far away, and if there were any, we didn’t notice because we had way too much fun or because we’ve been young and naive.
I don’t think that I felt adult with 18, also not with 20, and I think maturity came step by step. But now, if I look back, I certainly see how I matured. It’s all good, because when you grow up, you will also improve your life over time based on what you have experienced. But sometimes it’s still fun to look back to the naive childhood, teenage or the first years of adulthood. I think what we adults definitely lose over time is the naivety. As said, it is good because the less naive you are, the more you will open your eyes for things you need to do, and things you need to stop doing or things you need to improve. But the bad thing about this is that you also become more worried about different things the older you get. So, it would probably be wise to preserve a bit of naivety, but that’s easier said than done. We had this topic quite a few times in our circles over the last years and we made jokes about ourselves like “Maybe we’re in a midlife-crisis”. But the truth is, I personally accept getting older, it’s just that I like to remember back and see how things changed.
I don’t regret the party life in my younger years, but I don’t want to repeat that either. But I definitely miss the carefree feeling of that time. But the same could be said about my teenage years or childhood.
15 thoughts on “The Bridge”
I would love to have the body I had then … AND the attitude, but I wouldn’t want to BE that person again. It was nice, though, to not be worried about something all the time!
That’s exactly how I think about it. 🙂
🙂 That bridge looks extra lonely in black and white.
For the record, it is a beautiful photo.
Nicely done, Dennis!
It has been, especially at night. It was always a lonely corner, except that a lot of clubbers walked over this bridge on the weekend back then. Today the club is not existing anymore.
Yes, I miss that carefree attitude of the teens and twenties. You can never be that person again but then again most of us would not want to be. It’s good to have happy memories to look back on.
Exactly. I see it as one of the chapters in life. It’s interesting to remember back, but nothing I want to repeat. But a carefree attitude would be nice. I think I am getting more stressed with each year lol, but that’s just a side-effect of being more responsible, which is what we value today.
I think we all are Dennis.
It would be nice to have the energy and push I had then, but i’ve gotten wiser about how to use the body I have, not mourn the one I had. and it’s always good to have positive memories about your own life, it makes a huge difference later on. And the bridge photo is elegant.
Even in my late thirties I starting to notice the difference now. With 20 I was more fit. Even if I go running today, back then I could do this after a night out with heavy drinking and didn’t complain. Nowadays there is always the feeling of “Damn, that’s difficult” running with me. I try to stay fit and so far it works, but it’s getting more difficult.
Another thing is also health. I had the topic with friends too. One and the other person in our circle is now gettings first health issues. That comes with the age too. Me included.. fortunately still nothing that could kill me… but some annoyances for sure. Another thing of getting older is (when someone in your family died), realizing more than ever that health is not guaranteed forever. In other words, you become a realist. Plus is, with that you also start to value small things more than ever… like family visits, or a phone call of someone asking you how things go… all these small things. 🙂
I also had some good times with friends at that age but usually someone drove. It was stupid because I was always in the car with someone who had been drinking so walking would have been better.
We did that too when we wanted to party outside of Lübeck. Hamburg was an example, because it was a nice place to party. It was stupid because the driver was almost always drunken or drugged, or both. When I think about this today, I could take the timemaschine and go back and give myself a beating. I think that was super dangerous. The thing is, we could have taken the train to Hamburg. But that’s the naivity… young people do stupid stuff sometimes. We definitely did. In the news you often hear how this can go wrong, and it does regularly.
Yes, we do stupid things when we are young. I remember twice (with 2 different drivers) I had to grab the steering wheel because we were about to drive off the road.
We lived in Illinois. at the time the drinking age was 21 in Illinois and 18 in Wisconsin which was about 20 minutes away. There was no train we could take so we had to drive.
I think that’s it… when you are young, you see it like “Common, it’s just 20 minutes, what could go wrong?”. We definitely did. In fact, we never really thought much about any dangers, we just wanted to have fun.
It seemed like we were immortal then until a friend died from driving drunk. That made it real.
That’s very sad. Also true with the immortal feeling when you are young until something happens in your circles. I felt the same. We change the way we life our live, based on hearing, seeing or experiencing things.