I had one of those unusual weekends, with two significant events.
First, I was downtown Wiesbaden on Saturday....at the Saturn (our big multi-media shop). Mid-afternoon, I was about to exit the shop, and noted some guy walking in front of me with a tablet box....heading toward the checkout....then he does a 30-degree turn suddenly, exiting the store, and heading toward the escalator. Fair amount of speed and he's acting weird....then it hits me....he's robbing the store.
Yeah....he actually gets to the escalator and maybe a second later....some guy exits the side door of the store and gives into a chase. The robber kid (maybe nineteen)....doesn't really notice this guy for about two seconds, then turns to see the security guy in a full run.
The kid made good time down the escalator and probably had a twenty-foot lead....then headed toward the exit point of the mall and was going to run down the street. Not sure if the kid got away or not. Pretty stupid practice.....local cops might get the call, tap into the event, and want to escort you to your apartment.....then they'll inventory the contents and compare against recent reported robbery reports.
The second event was a old folks home "fest" in the local area. The wife has a relative in one, and we attended the Sunday "fest". Figure around sixty patients at the facility, and at least four-hundred relatives who attended the episode.
What got me was the number of political figures who showed up. The whole first hour was eaten up by six to seven politicians. Three or four read off prepared speeches.....talking up good medical care and the great help of the local party in getting things done. One of the guys who did a speech was the state fitness chief (yeah, I'm guessing he's in charge of something but it's hard to figure what). This guy did the speech with no cards or script....talking up to ten minutes....on local weather, wonderful people, and fine healthcare.
The thing is....this is a "free" deal where each party knows that they've got five-hundred folks standing there and that one speech might be the one to convince someone to flip from one party to another.....in their world....every single vote counts.
The odds of getting some attendance like this at US events? It's hard to say if 500 folks would be enough to draw US political folks out. Maybe the mayor and city council, but you wouldn't get some state party representative to chat for ten minutes like this.
I hinted to my wife that I enjoyed the free food and company at the event.....but I sure wouldn't go next year if there's going to be another hour of political speeches given.