Sunday, June 12, 2011

My first overseas trip: a year on- Frankfurt

12/06/2010  Frankfurt.

So there I was 2 days ago at Gare du Nord Station in Paris, thinking… It is grey and raining and some dodgy people are hanging about… Hmm I am off elsewhere.. Germany sounds nice! I boarded the ICE train to Frankfurt. It traveled at speeds of over 300 Km an hour, as I escaped the weather and the thieves of Paris, of course I did so in First class, and whilst sipping wine. I looked out the window mesmerized by the German countryside for most of the trip. I must say that I did have a couple if scares on my way to Frankfurt:

The train to Frankfurt stopped at what I thought was the second last stop. I figured we had another 45 mins to go till we reached Frankfurt... but as we left the ‘second last’ stop, the train started back in the direction it had come from!!! i.e. we were going backwards!!!!  I panicked, went white in the face, found someone who spoke English and was told that it was ok, we are going to Frankfurt. We had reached a terminus station and were not going back the way we came, though it seemed that way…Whew!!! As we rode backwards towards Frankfurt, a lightening storm in the not too far off distance, raced alongside off us, with lightening filling the horizon... such a brilliant site!!

Panic number two occurred when I decided to be blokey at the Frankfurt train station. I checked where my Hotel was (I booked it when I brought my ticket in Paris). ‘Oh! the hotel is only 400 meters away!. Well I will just walk down a few streets, towards the bridge, it’s on a street that runs off to the right, I’ll be fine’… and so I headed off without a map and not speaking the language.... It wasn’t long before I became very confused and dis-orientated ..... Miraculously, I did somehow find the hotel.

The weather in Frankfurt was sublime! I walked the city streets, visited two art galleries. One was modern conceptual art (a bit too conceptual for me) and the other had an exhibition of German expressionist Ernst Kirchner. It was great and I connected with a couple his pieces.  

I stumbled upon a gay section of town, then a record shop, where I brought a 2nd hand lp by a German electronic guy I like. I walked into a lunch time market, where stands sold; deli goods, fruit and veg, cooked sausages and lots of beer !!! There were seats where people sat and drank.. it was all very civilized. I have never seen so much beer being drunk before, in fact I have never had so much beer before!! From light fruity beers, to darker and heavier ones. Beer, Beer, Beer (German beer has to be the best beer anywhere!). After walking for miles, eating heaps and of course more shopping!!! I finally made my way back to the Hotel, to briefly rest and freshen up, so that I could do it all again!
Now refreshed and donning some light linen pants, I walked along the river making my way into the center of town. I had coffee at a café as I sat and wrote in my journal. I watched and listened to the locals. Spied a few cute guys, all soon met by their female partners.. (story of my life !!  LOL). I walked some more and got lost again!!! What is it with me and getting lost???? While lost, I was mistaken a few times by Germans as a local and was asked for directions, that was kind of fun. Frankfurt was so lovely! But sadly, soon came the time to say Auf Wiedersehen and board the train to Berlin.  For the duration of the four hour trip, I shared a first class cabin with a handsome man who spoke English very well and has a PHD in Physics. Unfortunately for me, he was married. Hmmm, I could certainly marry a German man… well any man when it comes down to it.. universe are you listening??? Anyway, soon I will arrive in Berlin where my friend M who is working in Dublin, is also on her way over to meet up for a few days!

Next Berlin!!

German Beer...BITburger....Yum....

More German beer... yummmm.....(I suddenly feel like Homer Simpson)

On the other side of the river......The Epiphany Church

Saint Bartholomeus's Cathedral (Dom Sankt Bartholomäus) and at it's base are some Roman ruins

A closer look at the Roman ruins

and again.....

Along the 'River Main', I came across concrete table tennis tables, which people used.. very cool !!!

Museum of Modern Art

Market I stumbled across

This mushroom dish I brought at the market was much nicer than it looks

There were so many people using bikes

So many apartments had flower boxes!!

After a hard days walking, i need coffee... and err... cake!!!

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