And the Europe blogging begins! Guten tag from Germany!
I can’t believe this trip has actually come around. Myself, Peter and our friends Georgia & Richard started planning this trip over a year ago, and for years I’ve dreamed of frolicking through streets of snow and exploring strange and beautiful new places. The world feels like it’s shrunk!
This is easily the furthest I’ve ever been from home. The 20-something hour plane trip and today’s 4 hour train ride were exhausting but totally worth it to be here. It’s literally freezing outside (below freezing actually!) and I couldn’t be more ecstatic about it! I think I spent the majority of the train ride today staring out the window in complete disbelief – I have never seen this much snow!
Some things I’ve learnt so far:
1. When backpacking, you have to embrace being a tourist. When you all have the same backpack and matching knitted beanies (thank you Gary!) there’s no way you’re going to look like a local- if that’s not enough, the confused looks on our faces when we hear anything but “guten tag”, “danke” or “pretzel” would probably do it. That being said, I’m pretty impressed by Richard & Georgia’s German. It’s getting us through!
2. Peter wasn’t lying. Europeans don’t use top sheets & I think it’s totally weird. This morning I woke up between the fitted bottom sheet and the mattress…
3. German people are lovely, and extremely fluent in English. We’ve had a lot of people start conversations with us in German (despite the tourist thing), and everyone has been more than happy to chat to us in a way we can understand.
4. Long flights… agghhhhhhhhhh.
5. European trains… ahhh! However, we did learn to book ahead when we got moved out of our seats by people who had reserved them. Booking seats on trains… never heard of such a thing!
6. Sunday really is a sabbath. I’m not sure if this is actually relating to the sabbath as a biblical day of rest – but on Sunday, EVERYTHING is closed. Frankfurt was like a ghost town today, and we wandered freely through the streets mid morning with only a few other people and a couple of dogs. It was totally quiet, and absolutely beautiful.
That’s about all I’ve got for now! Here’s a few pictures of the start of our trip – including one of Peter doing something he calls ‘swanning’ in front of a monumental statue that looked somewhat significant.
Danke for reading!