i cried yesterday because we are leaving in less than a week’s time. it will be hard to adjust when i come back but easier for me to plan our next adventure, right?
we had a pretty long journey from kyllburg to friedrichshafen, but it was worth it. after 8 hours we were greeted by freidrichshafen. it was so beautiful! there was a harbor with little shops and many restaurants. this was also the home of the zeppelin. we had drinks at the beach club and watched the sunset near the swiss alps. these views were something from a post card or desktop background. refrain from stealing my beautiful pics. #photocred
we stayed with my friend ashley who is an au pair for a family of five. we were lucky that she had a flexible schedule and we were allowed to stay with her.
coincidentally, they found a hedgehog in their backyard the day we came. i used to have a pet hedgehog so it was pretty cute to see a wild one. the wild ones in europe are found in gardens, bushes or (you guessed it) hedges!
he is taking a snooze below, by the way. not dead! hedgehogs are nocturnal.
we took a ferry the day after our arrival from friedrichshafen to konstanz, across the lake. this lake water was crystal clear because it comes from the melted snow on the swiss alps. you could cross this lake from germany to switzerland, or over to austria. we forgot our passports in our bag so we did not go to switzerland. instead we went next door to konstanz, which is still germany but shares the swiss border.
the buildings were very old and the oldest we saw was dated back to the 1200s. whoa. america is only 200-something so it’s crazy to think how long these buildings and towns have been around.
while walking, we stopped by a timberland store to browse. when we were leaving, i turned back around and realized the huge canvas on the wall was of minneapolis. you can’t miss that gold medal flour sign. i waved lewis and ashley back in to the store and they both struck up a conversation with the saleswoman while i looked around the clearance racks outside. guilty pleasure.
when i came back in to the store, lewis was pointing out the different minneapolis landmarks they had hanging in the store and ashley was told she could keep the canvas when they changed the store theme. lucky! a canvas like that would easily be over $400 in the US.
we went to the top of the cathedral in konstanz to see the views. it was probably 20 flights of stairs to go up. yikes! we made it to the top (very of out breath) but the views were worth it. i can’t believe how out of shape i felt after walking 70 or so miles this trip.
we were greeted by the BIGGEST spider EVER when we reached the top, making me want to vomit. luckily it was on the other side of the window but thinking about it now gives me the chills and makes me want to cry. it has to be mentioned though because it was so scary and i hate spiders.
this happened again when lewis and i were walking under a bridge. a huge spider was dangling from its silk in the middle of the tunnel. i abruptly covered my mouth and hugged the wall. lewis was about to walk right in to it, but i couldn’t get the words out of my mouth. he turned around and said, “what?” literally right before he walked in to it. this is when i pointed with a trembling finger and spit out the word “spider”. sighs from lewis’s behalf as he detoured around it. i really hate spiders.
ashley had to pick her nanny kids up from school so lewis and i got to stay in konstanz a while longer. we spent time at the shopping mall where we witnessed a large great dane hanging outside the pharmacy. i am not sure if i will ever get used to dogs being able to go inside the mall. i am sure someone out there has stepped in a pile of dog poop on their way to H&M.
when we got back to friedrichshafen via ferry, we ate dinner at a thai restaurant. this was the only place we saw with a menu in english. the asian waitress also spoke pretty clear english, which i am sure was refreshing for her. where we were at was a big tourist spot for germans, but not really a destination for americans. so seeing or hearing english was rare the past few days.
any way, this is where i had my first (and not last) colaweisien. this is cola mixed with beer, and SUPER common in germany. they either mix it with coke or fanta. so delicious! i will be having more of these during oktoberfest.
today, ashley brought us to her front yard which had a surplus of apple trees. i had the best apple i have ever eaten and i picked it myself! there were also plum and peach trees. not sure why, but everything in europe just taste better. probably because the food in USA is all modified junk. (i still love you, taco bell)
a few things i like about germany and europe is the freshness of food, the booze is cheap and okay to drink at any time, and that food is always relatively cheap with good portion sizes.
a few things that have bothered me about europe is the lack of water and paying to use the restroom. do not take these things for granted. asking for a “water cup” at a restaurant or fast food does not happen. you can buy a bottle of water for €3, on average. if you are at a grocery store it is cheap, but a dinky glass or water bottle is easily €3-4 anywhere else. in contrast, beer is usually €1 or €3 for half a liter (0.5). in fact, lewis just bought two beers at the convenience store for €1.59 a piece and they are 0.51 L.
it makes sense, economically, to drink beer.
the other thing is bathrooms. you have to pay to use the restroom in most places, and if you don’t have to pay, there is usually a bathroom attendant there that you are expected to tip. you obviously don’t have to pay if you are in a restaurant and are a customer, but sometimes you don’t want to buy a €3 bottle of water just to go pee. it is frustrating to dig around in your pocket for coins to make sure you have enough to access a restroom.
don’t get me wrong, though. i would easily pay for bottled watered and pay to go to the bathroom without complaints if i got to stay here.
on a super side note, i also like how many sunflower fields we have passed on this trip. if only we had come a month earlier, they all would have been in bloom. they are starting to die now and not quite picture worthy, but it makes me smile every time i see one out the train window. man, i wish i could stay forever.
onward to munich/oktoberfest 🙂
wish our livers luck!