‘Twas an impulsive and impromptu accord, but Atis and I decided to vacay in Germany! Atis has family near Frankfurt, so we took the opportunity to visit. The Deutschland did not disappoint. From Nov 22nd to Dec 2nd, it’s like we went around the world in 10 days.
You know the saying, “It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey”? Well, in this case, it was really about the destination. The flight to Europe, and back, was excruciating! I felt like I was gonna lose my mind from discomfort. Going to, we had to go from Honolulu to Vancouver in Canada, to Amsterdam in Netherlands, and finally to Frankfurt. Three flights! It took two days to get to Germany. I could not wait to lay flat and straight, no more of that upright position shit. Although, amazingly, we were fine when we got to the sausage eating European land. We weren’t jet lagged or as exhausted as we thought we’d be (we thought we were gonna die). We were gung-ho on everything, almost.
Rüdesheim am Rhein
The first place we went to was Rüdesheim on the Rhein and their Christmas Market. Disclaimer: we went to Christmas Markets majority of the trip lol. It was Atis and I’s first Christmas Market and it was what you’d expect a Christmas Market to be; lots of German food, hot German alcoholic beverages, German Christmas decor, German Christmas-related items for sale, etc., just like a carnival. We went during the day, so unfortunately we didn’t see glistening Christmas lights, but we could still feel the Christmas vibe. That vibe was probably the cold weather.
It was cold! It was in the 30’s, mid to high, but felt low, so very low. I’ve been to Japan and Korea during their cold seasons and I underestimated their coldness. This time, I prepared myself. I prepared for the real deal...German cold weather. I brought my thick ass jackets, thermals, gloves, all ready to be layered. Layering was a fucking task, I hated doing it; felt constricted and heavy! But I’ve learned all that shit won’t be enough! You can layer all you like, put on chunky coats, put on pants over socks over stockings, and yet, it still won’t be enough. The key to warmth are your hands and feet. My feet were freezing because my shoes weren’t warm enough and apparently three pairs of socks weren’t adequate also. I was given toe warmers and those were a life saver. Once I stuck those inside my shoes, I was relieved. I could take off a layer or two of clothing.
These things smelled good.
Had my first “wurst”, a Bratwurst. Loved it! I mostly ate this during Christmas Markets.
Salmon being cooked on plank wood. It was yum!
Like I said, It was cold. So, I bought this thing. You put it in the microwave for 90 seconds and it stays warms for a long while. It also radiates a nice, soothing, lavender scent. I held on to it for warmth, and for dear life.
Not a beer person, but Glühbier was gut.
Favorite from Rüdesheim was the cable car ride up and down Niederwald. It was a sight for sore eyes. You can see the vineyard and the town right next to the rhein/river.
I don’t know what came over me, but I became terrified when I rode the cable car. I guess I was afraid of heights, which is unusual. Atis is usually the one kind of weary of heights, but he was totally fine. I was nerve wracked. LOL. But the spectacular views overwhelmed my paranoia, and I still had fun.
Limburg an der Lahn
The cute town of Limburg had their Christmas Market, and we checked it out. This time we went a little later in the day, so we were able to see a bit of the Christmas lighting and the decor that goes with it. Also, the sun sets early during Fall, and even earlier in Winter. By 4:30 PM, the sun’s gone!
This town is known for their medieval half-timbered houses still standing in the streets and alleys. I thought it was the cutest thing; it’s so German.
Definitely started to feel the Christmas spirit here.
We were caught in the middle of a “reindeer game” lol
We found these heavenly mushrooms, “himmlisch champignon”. It was soo delicious! The sauce used over it was similar to the sauce used with our escargot in Le Bistro at Aina Haina, Hawai’i; a creamy, buttery, garlic taste. Maybe that’s why we loved it so much. And of course, bread on the side. Always comes with bread or potato, no rice.
We visited the gorgeous town of Wiesbaden, and you guessed it, another Christmas Market. We milking the Christmas Markets in Germany.
This place was niice. If I had to live in Germany, this would be the town I’d reside in. The “houses” looked like mini mansions. I guess you call ‘em villas. And the Roman architecture was divine. This place is a spa town, but we didn’t go to one. Next time, maybe.
We went ice skating! “If you can’t rollerblade, Ice Skate!” This warmed us up quick. Skating in tight, bulky clothes was a workout.
We didn’t stay long because we were going to Paris the next day!
Last, but definitely not the least, we went to Drachenburg Castle. To their Christmas Market! Lol. We got to see at least one castle. Whoop whoop!
There was a light hike to get up to the castle from the castle’s designated parking lot, but the hike helped us warm up a bit, so it’s a good thing. There’s also a rail that takes you up and down, the Drachenfels Railway, but not sure where the stops are because it’s not exclusively for the castle. But like I said, it’s not too bad of a climb, if you drove.
Had goulash for the first time. Will be having it again.
We toured around and inside the castle for free!
English is one of the languages spoken in Germany, so there’s no real need to learn the German language. But, there are some words and phrases that might be of use, and it’s respectful to know the basics in any culture.
Bitte = Please. Almost sounds like “bitter”.
Nein = No. Atis jokingly scolded his 3-year-old nephew when he was playing with his cup of milk, telling him “nein!” That kid almost flipped his plate. He was the “wurst” and a “brat”, a “Bratwurst” hahaha! Just kidding! He’s an adorable little Bratwurst.
Wurst = Sausage. The popular ones are Bratwurst, which is pork sausage, and Currywurst, which is pork sausage with curry.
Danke schön = Thank you very much.
Ein bier, bitte = One beer, please. You’re in the capital of beer. You might as well learn how to ask for one.
Prost = Cheers. I learned when you “prost”, you must look at the person in the eye you are “prosting”. If not, Germans will get mad.
Gut = Good. Is gut, ya?
Ausfahrt = Exit, for vehicles. You’ll see this a lot when exiting the autobahn or freeway in Germany. Or a parking structure.
Einfahrt = Entrance, for vehicles.
Ausgang = Exit. You’ll see this a lot when taking the subways or metro. Or the airports in Germany.
Eingang = Entrance
Schloss = Castle. There’s lots of schloss in Germany.
Wasser = Water. Beer is cheaper than water in Germany, btw. Atis had a ball with that. But me, I’m a water drinker. I drink water the most. I hardly drink any juices or sodas or coffee, so I know water. Germany has really good water. And they make an effort to keep their water clean, so you can drink water straight from your kitchen sink, and even your bathroom sink. I thought Hawai’i had good water, but even Berlin’s water was gut.
Atis’s Bier Collection
* Related Posts *
* You May Also Like *