In Koln it was raining and I had a nice hot currywurst and brochen and a Gaffel Kolsch before jumping on the train to Liege.
First of all. Just got off the train with a bunch of Germans. I didn’t realize I would be going through Germany, I had assumed the route would go through France. No matter. I am having a German pint when I get to Koln because, I am, slowly learning how to live in this world.
Took train to Mannheim.
HOLY CRAP JUST SAW A GERMAN CASTLE ON A HILL!!! COOL!!!!
Mannheim. Slept most of the way there. A real on and off sleep. At the next to last stop I awoke to an angry German lady glowering over me, yelling something in Deutch. Turns out I was sitting in her seat. (I had changed because the train was empty earlier, and my seat smelled like urine. Logical, yes?) Anyway. She kept speaking in German even though I clearly didn’t understand it. I couldn’t understand why she didn’t just switch to English, and then I realized I wasn’t in Switzerland anymore—the magical foreign country that speaks all languages.
So. Got up and stood for the rest of the ride. Stood with a bunch of German army boys my age. They were so beautiful and so typically soldiers. They were so young though! It was literally like watching myself in uniform. They all wore adorable black berets with the German stripes on them. And when we all got off they were all around with cigarettes already burning away.
After peacefully watching these beautiful specimens of humanity puffing smoke out in only the coolest way, I headed in the direction of the ticket office.
(I AM TRAVELING ALONG THE RHINE RIGHT NOW. IT IS UNBELIEVABLY BEAUTIFUL. Like nothing I have ever seen. Thick green trees and shrubbery covering the magnificent hills lining the river. Reminds me of what African mountains look like.)
Anyway. Long story short I missed my train. Asked like 15 people and no one could really help. Got to
HOLY SHIT THIS IS BEAUTIFUL…….
Little old traditional German town along the Rhine with castles on the cliffs above. This is amazing.
Got to my train the minute it took off. Figures. Teary eyed and preparing myself to shell over a hundred euros for another ticket,
HAVE NOT SEEN ANYTHING SO EERIE AND BEAUTIFUL IN THE WHOLE TIME I HAVE BEEN IN EUROPE. IN MY WHOLE LIFE ACTUALLY. THIS IS SO WORTH THE MONEY FOR THE TICKET. WOW. JUST INDESCRIBABLE. And we just came out of a hole in a mountain, and in another. WoW.
I’ll find pics of the town online. You need to see it.
ANOTHERRRRRRRRRRRR WHAT THE HELL!???!?!?
Wine fields all over. Did not know Germany grew so much wine!
Wow. Okay. I got a few pictures which of course do not do this view and ambiance justice, but at least you will be able to partially understand. :)
They write the names of the cities on the banks of the Rhine! So you see it going past. So cute.
Epic old masterpieces towering eerily on so many gigantic hilltops!
Train ride along the Rhine on a rainy day. One of the best things you can do with your life.
Feel so safe in this ice train cruising the length of Germany.
Ah! Tchibo coffee. :P
Where was I in my narrative?
Missed the train. So upset. Being really negative. Then, right AFTER the train left—I found the info booth right in plain sight. :P Went up and the lady printed me out a new route that I would take, making me an hour later than expected, but still getting there without any problem. SUCH a sigh of relief. And now I know, if it ever happens again, it is not the end of the world, all you have to do is get a new schedule, and accept you’ll be a bit later than expected. :)
Trainride to Mainz sat down and a bunch of people my age sat around me. Still freaked out from missing my train before—I asked the boy sitting next to me, who smells of the lovely handrolled cigarette aroma that only Europeans can pull off, if I was going in the right direction.
He didn’t speak English very well.
Oh yeah, I thought. I am still in a different country. Switzerland really spoiled me with everyone speaking my language!
Anyway. The girl next to me was like, can I help you? And I was like, yeah— and she was very nice and reassured me I was on the right track, etc. The boy next to her would throw out tidbits every once in awhile too.
They ditched me after we got off, but that is probably perfectly fine because I am a stupid American traveling stupidly in their country. I wouldn’t have had as much patience as they had if I was in their shoes, actually.
OH! But so cute. The guy that I asked first— when he got up to get off, I could feel him trying to get my attention with his eyes. He was like 7 feet tall but really shy. And when I finally looked up he said, immediately and abrupty with a heavy German accent: “I have to go now.” So cute he wanted to say goodbye so back, especially since we had only exchanged a few words of broken language. The girl next to laughed, and he bent down to get through the door and hopped off the train. German boys are so cute. This is what I have gleaned from the past 24 hours. You would think I would have realized this when I spent a MONTH in Germany, but I didn’t really meet anyone my age. Now though, they keep popping up. And I like it. :)
Got off the train myself a bit later and texted Loic that the train had been delayed so I would be late.
Toni’s friend Chris’s motto: “Take what you need and share what you have.”
“But I still want to help pay for dinner!” “You’re being insulting. You’re not in American anymore” Thomas said, good naturedly. So I let it go and let them treat me like a queen. Go figure. Glad I got to see this part of humanity. I NEEDED to see this part of humanity on this trip, or else I think I was headed toward losing all hope for the good life. That, last night, was the good life.
Toni was going to fix me SAUERKRAUT tomorrow. “You’re sure you can’t stay one more night?” AHHHHHHHHHH MAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAANNNNNNNNNNN.
I have NEVER experienced anything like last night before. But I would love to experience it again.
Unser Bier slogan — I need to show you. So cute!!!
Bought beautiful expensive white blueberry Swiss chocolate for my brother. With real blueberry pieces inside. It looks so interesting and good!! Why am I posting this? Because I cannot keep secrets and because my brother never reads my blog anyway. :P
Swiss websites end in .ch
God I am ADDICTED to croissants now. With cheese in the morning. Good thing I am going to French countries next so I can get my fill. But I am not allowed to slice my croissants and put cheese or anything else inside of them in France. According to Bertrand and Eva this is a HIGHLY offensive action, of which the whole rest of Europe is guilty of. So no cheese!
Toni made me coffee this morning to say goodbye. So sweet!
When I first met him he started speaking Deutch at me. And I was like, tiredly, “No. English.” I am way too German looking. Ha. I really want to learn German now though. Beginning to like the language so much more the more I hear it. They all told me at dinner that it is the shape of my head- my forehead, that makes me really German.
Anyway. When I first met Toni I was really skeptical as I have met MANY a MANY freakshows in the past few weeks, and fixing dinner with a stranger isn’t something you do everyday. First I thought he wanted ME to cook everything, like a housewife, while he paid for the food. I have spent too much time in England, I think. Haha. Thankfully, when I asked if this is what he meant, he was like, No, No, No, We cook together!!! And I was like, why not. :) We went outside and drank coffee that he made and talked. Then we came back in and started fixing dinner.
It was unbelievably good. Basmati rice with Carrots, onions, garlic, zucchini, tomatoes, asparagus, broccoli, bell peppers and wonderful expensive brie cheese on top! All of this with loads of coffee and a responsible amount, a European amount, of Weiss German beer. When we finished there were other people in the kitchen- a Chilean family, and Toni invited them to eat with us, giving them heaping plates of hot food. So, so nice!