Germany, you were HOT!
My phone said it was 86°F the day we got there, but it was the hottest 86° I’ve ever felt, and I lived in Atlanta, GA for three years. Plus we were in an AirBnB apartment with no A/C which would have been fine with a house fan, but there was no fan either. So 86°. . . humid. . . very little breeze, and WiFi that only worked sometimes if we were standing on the bed in the master bedroom.
I did not account for Germany
potentially being so warm but I also didn’t expect to be insanely sleep deprived and jet lagged
. I feel a little salty about you Frankfurt…. Is it just me or my jet lag talking? (I think it was the jet lag, the heat, the lack of WiFi, and her cold. I rather enjoyed Frankfurt excluding where we stayed).
Frankfurt was a nice enough stopping point and if we had the chance to stay longer I’m sure I would have enjoyed it more. It was especially green and one of the three days we were there the afternoon had a gorgeous rain shower. We looked out the window and there was a family of hares just hanging out under a tree! How very German!!!!
Here is a list of the finer points we experienced in Deutschland
1. The beer is really good, and it’s really, really cheap– quite literally cheaper than water by volume.
2. You have to pay for pretty much everything: shopping carts, shopping bags, water…keep that in mind when you go shopping. We didn’t know why the carts were chained together with keys in the hand rest until a mortified German pointed it out to us after we tried to take her cart off of her hands without paying .50€
“NO YOU PAY” she said pointing discerningly at the locked up carts….
2b. Germans really follow the rules. There is no j-walking, not a lot of litter on the main streets and certainly no cart stealing from the sub par Aldo grocery store…. Not without paying up first. My dad seconded this observation. He’s been to Germany plenty of times on business trips. He said to me “they say if you’re at a German train station and you think your train is two minutes early, chances are, it’s not your train” — they’re punctual and have incredible follow through.
3. You have to pay for water, everywhere– fast forward to Barcelona, you have to pay for water here too. (After almost four years sober, it may be time for a beer.)
Here is a quick travel hack– We HIGHLY suggest bringing a camelback water system along with you if you decide to travel through Europe long term. It gets expensive constantly buying water (even though as Arizonians we are used to it). If you can buy a giant water and fill the pack it lasts longer and saves money. Plus the kids think it’s fun to drink out of. (Griffin has figured out how to get water out of this, but doesn’t really drink it. He just ends up soaking wet.)
4. Be prepared for the small-ness — cups are small, dishes are small, showers are small, towels, portions… Everything except the beers (high five Germany). (I thought the prices were great for the amount of food we got. We walked to this pasta restaurant from our apartment.)
5. Download “MyTaxi” when you’re there. MyTaxi is an app much like Uber (there was no Uber in Frankfurt), only many of them are affiliated with a larger corporation. Once you find a driver you like it’s easy to grab their info and call them directly next time, saving them from paying a few. You can put your address in as well as the destination, which makes for easier communication with a driver who doesn’t speak English, which brings us to #6
6. Don’t expect Germans to always speak English to you (Restaurants were fine, but many of the cab drivers we road with seemed speak German and probably one of the forth or fifth most common languages.) — because they won’t. Some do, many don’t.
7. There are tons of vegetarian and vegan options in Germany, we were so pleasantly surprised! We had some great veggie burgers and many of the food is marked so it’s easy to find out what we can and can’t eat.
The pasta was great. The breaded and deep fried portobello mushroom burger was the best portobello burger I’ve ever had.
That’s about it for Frankfurt! We have some super exciting content coming up about our stay so far in Barcelona! We are just LOVING this place so much. Cheers!