If I were sipping a port and enjoying a cigar, what would the Colonel say to me? Possibly this, if he were being generous.
Mattierzoll 1978. Master Ginge in Germany and family visiting the old East German border on a fine, sunny Lower Saxony day. The bird song and Anglophone chit-chat is suddenly broken by the plaintive cry from an old German lady: “Erste kommt der kleine Bunker, und dann kommt der grosse Bunker.”
Needless to say, this receives no sympathetic reaction from the British military contingent, but simply becomes a long-standing family in-joke (especially among father, son and uncle), still enjoyed and savoured over three decades later, causing tears of laughter (or the occasional groan) all round.
- Had a bit too much to drink? Get your mobile out at 2300 and phone Sunray in bed, mobile not switched off, and tell him, “Erste kommt…”
- Tell your nephew that even though you can’t speak Russian like he can, you can speak German… “Erste kommt…”
- Want to introduce your lovely German girlfriend over the phone to your mum? Plead with her to say, “Erste kommt…” and then hear both the A-party and the B-party calling out, “No, no, no…” or “Nein, nein, nein…”
It is true, men are just boys in long trousers. Do you have any family in-jokes or catchphrases that nobody else understands?