HAAAAAA-LOWWWW from Oberaudorf, a very cute Bavarian village right on the footsteps on the Alps... as well as childhood home of German soccer captain, Bastian Schweinsteiger and my awesome friend, Svenja :). As much as I enjoyed Munich, I was really excited to stay with her since I think the smaller, quaint German towns are what gives the country it’s charm and beauty—especially in Bavaria which what I picture when I think of Germany (beautiful evergreen trees, red roofed houses, and of course, the mountains!) CHECK OUT THIS VIEW FROM THE BALCONY :)
As I had mentioned, I’m staying with a friend, Svenja, who I met while traveling in Colombia (thanks to Albert… again!!!) :) and her wonderfully caring family! After being on the road for 2 months, bouncing from hostels to friend’s (or friend’s of friends) places, it’s extremely comforting to settle in at the home of a loving (and accomplished!) family :) Svenja is a language ninja (she can speak English fluently, Spanish... fluentish, and obviously German), her brother is on the German national ski team, and her 88 year old great aunt makes her own schnapps… and even downed a few shots at the dinner table :) They’ve been so kind and welcoming—they’ve cooked me great meals, taught me a few new German phrases, and even did my laundry!!
She’s been an awesome host, catering to my touristy whims and desires. Before I left Munich, we took a day trip with a few of her friends to Fussen, which is about 2.5 hours outside of the city, to see Neuschwanstein Castle (try saying that 5 times fast!) which translates to New Swanstone Castle… not exactly sure why it’s named that because it doesn’t look like a swan… but it’s made out of stone and i guess it’s fairly new compared to other castles in Europe (construction stopped in 1892.. technically it’s still unfinished)
We had a mini Instagram photo shoot because I MEAN COME ON… its sososo picturesque… like something out of a fairytale (literally) Apparently it was the inspiration for the Walt Disney’s Sleeping beauty castle.
After our day trip, I went back to Munich to spend Friday night out and about in the city..,,, Kilian took me out to hang out with his wonderful, lovely friends who lived in the former Olympic village. I have no idea where we ended up afterwards. We mixed way too many drinks, danced for many hours, and came back at 5:30AM. I managed to pop out of bed at 10:00AM, move very slowly to pack up my things, then eventually sprinted to the train station where i justtttttt managed to catch train to Rosenheim, where we had a delicious lunch with her friend Julia and her boyfriend Patrick, as well as a Kimye inspired photoshoot on the back of a scooter. We wandered around the city for a bit, and then eventually drove on the autobahn to her place. She actually lives 5 minutes away from the Austria border, which is mindblowing to me.
When we arrived at her home, we both took a little nap. By the time we woke up, dinner was served! Her parents made this delicious spread of German sausages, kebabs, fresh salad, bread, and potatoes.. and of course Hugo, which is a refreshing soda/ champagne drink enhanced with elderberry flower syrup, lime and mint leaves :) This was followed by a delicious cake, made by their neighbor, and biscotti… I was very voll (full, in German) but i was craving a home cooked meal :) We talked for hours, laughing and joking, while also watching the national league’s championship match—since bayern munich was not playing, they were not as invested in the match, but it was still awesome to see their excitement (though the team they were rooting for lost :() I also learned a few new German words, like Prost (cheers!) and Servus (hello/goodbye).
The next day we woke up at around 9 so we could hike up the Alps.. which is like a 15 minute drive from her place. Her parents had an amazing breakfast spread all ready for us, full of breads, pretzels, meats, cheeses, jams, and yogurt! It was really hard not to stuff myself, but i had to resist, since hiking while bloated is never, ever fun.
On our way to the mountains, we stopped and picked up another one of Svenja's friends, Katarina and spent the next few hours hiking, snacking, and of course, taking lots of photos. We also came up with a million dollar invention -- the selfie hiking pole (patent still pending!) The hike was a good mixture between steep inclines and flat surfaces so i felt like i actually got a decent workout.. especially after all the food I consumed (see below!)
By the time we finished, we were pretty hungry, so we decided to go to Kufstein, Austria and get dinner. Unfortunately on our way there we got into a mini car accident, but luckily no one was hurt and there was no real damage to the car. After exchanging insurance info with the person who hit our car, we were on our way to the restaurant, which was in a place that looked like Diagon Alley called, Weinhaus auracher löchl, which was about 10 minutes away from her house. IN ANOTHER COUNTRY. Mindblown, i tell ya!!
The food was SOOO good.. and SOO filling. I got pfandl, which is a cheese curd pasta dish. with some pork. I've probably consumed more pork in the past 2 days than in the last 5 years.. but i figured that it's such an important part of their culture, that i haveee to eat it (along with drinking.. DUH!) After dinner we rolled into bed since we were all tired and in food comas. We wanted to wake up early the next morning to get to Munich so we could eat some more, before I headed out to Hamburg.
White sausages aka weisswurst are a very traditional Bavarian dish, which I had to eat before i left. It consists of white sausage (Duh), a pretzel, a generous helping of mustards, and of course, a Franzishaner weissbier, a deliciously fruity and light beer. Did I mention that by law, you can’t serve it past noon? According to Wikipedia: preservatives are not used, the meat is not smoked, and hence the sausage is made fresh every day... Plus, you gotta love a breakfast beer…
after our yummy meal, Svenja and I sadly departed ways. It’s crazy to think that I didn’t know her two months ago and only hung out with her for a night, yet she and her family opened their home to me and treated me so kindly and generously. Traveling, I tell ya, really restores your faith in humanity :)
ANYWHOSE, i’m on a train to Hamburg right now. i signed up for BlaBlaCar, which I thought meant some dude was going to be driving me, but in fact, I’m on a train (German trains have WiFi and decently cleaned public bathrooms on the train) because I think they organized a large group together so that the tickets were cheaper.. not really sure how it really works, but I know that instead of paying 120euros for transport, I’m only paying 40 so I’m happy. We’ll send how wisely I spend my eXXXcess money in Hamburg (there’s a red light district…) puhahahaha.