Remember that psychic I told you about back in January? If not, you can read that post here.
He had other things to say, one being that I was going to love Europe. I’ve been to Europe twice – once when I was a kid and once when I was 17. And for the most part I did love it, or what I remembered. I was young, scared, and jet-lagged, but in general the trips were pretty awesome.
I chuckled to myself when he told me this. There was no way we were going to Europe anytime soon. We’ve been trying to catch up financially for years from the move to Boise and Johnny’s flight school. Road trips and camping were in our budget. Not Europe. And then to top it off, I quit the job I had because frankly, I just didn’t like it. So there went the extra little income I had been bringing in.
But that’s how magic happens. When you do the thing you know you have to do, even though it just doesn’t make sense, based on nothing but a gut feeling, and you’re rewarded for it in some crazy unexpected way.
Two weeks after I put in my notice, Johnny’s boss called and offered him a promotion. Suddenly our financial worries were lessened. He would make up the lost income that I had incurred, allowing us to continue to pay debt and work to get ahead while I stayed home with our kids. And two weeks after that he received the offer to go to Germany for school for a new client’s helicopter.
Can I pause here for dramatic effect?
Now the only thing we had to figure out was how to get ME to Europe.
Luckily Johnny’s travel affords him some pretty sweet benefits. He’s racking up points for flights and hotels in his sleep practically. We used points to get us all to Kansas where we dropped off our kids with my parents and then bought my ticket to Germany. A stretch for sure, but one we were willing to make. This opportunity was just too good to pass up. And besides, the psychic said so.
So here I am being a part time gypsy again. We’ve been here for five days and the psychic was right. I LOVE Europe, or Germany at the very least. I love the soul of old buildings, churches, statues, art and bridges. I love languages and although I don’t speak German, I love to try and I love to listen. I love the culture – very modern but with a slightly slower tone. Public transportation is not just an option here, it is a way of life. Trains and buses carry people all over the country. Bikes are used as well. Paths have been built on the roads, on the sidewalks, and from town to town, allowing people to effortlessly and safely navigate city traffic. There are bike taxis and even bike garages to help with the increasing number of bikes.
We only had one day in Munich before we had to leave for Donauworth, where Johnny’s school is held. So we walked around Old Town as much as we could and caught the highlights. My long-awaited favorite is the Neues Rathaus, or New Town Hall. By new, they mean it was built between 1867 and 1909. New, by Europe’s standards.
I went to Germany with my mom, grandma, and sister when I was seven to visit my great-grandmother. I don’t have a lot of memories of the trip but I do remember the Neues Rathaus. It has moving figures and a clock that chimes at noon. It’s very quaint. My memories of it were pretty accurate and it was fun to be back in a place I had visited as a child.
We walked all over Old Town taking in as many of the sights as we could before we had to leave. I love old churches, and Munich has many. The oldest church was built in 1278-94. We missed that one unfortunately but we did find the biggest. It is in fact the biggest Gothic building in southern Germany – the Frauenkirche. The two towers are 330 feet tall. It was under partial reconstruction while we were there, but a picture wouldn’t do it justice anyway. It is IMMENSE. We walked inside and unwittingly walked right into Sunday Mass. Oops!
We enjoyed many other old buildings and churches, side streets with decorative grottos hidden away, statues, memorials to wars and rulers from hundreds of years ago. To look at things that were built not just before my life time, but before my country was even discovered, is humbling to say the least.
I love the old stuff, but another thing I noticed and loved about Munich is the cars. So. Many. Fast. Cars. Germany is home to Volkswagen, Audi, BMW, and Mercedes. And of course one of its claims to fame is the Autobahn. The superhighway with no speed limit. We loved watching a fast Audi, followed by a fast Mercedes drive by. And were pleasantly surprised to see three Aston Martins in one day. Wow. One of our hopes while we are here is to drive a fast car – really fast. We’ll see if we can make that happen.