With study week coming to a close, I’m back in my little apartment after an entire week of traveling. Going to Germany was truly a fun week, but I am exhausted after all the trains and walking and everything I was doing.
Curious to know exactly what I did?
I started off having some fries and a burger in Munich, home of the big Oktoberfest celebration in September. Wandering around, I found there was more to Munich than the beer. The architecture of the different storefronts and churches were amazing to see. Everything seemed to be touched by gold. Even the English Garden, Munich’s 900 acre park, was not complete without a beautiful vantage point under a golden dome.
My favorite part of the entire week was hiking in the Black Forest. This huge region in western Germany are covered in these gorgeous woods. The views took my breath away, and it wasn’t just because of the steep hike. The mountains were covered in different yellows and green, but it wasn’t as vibrant colors as I was used to in the States. I stomped over all the leaves that were scattered all along the pathways up the climb.
The peak of the climb was the castle I explored at the top. It was full of staircases that never seemed to stop. I was exhausted, but I didn’t care about how much my legs were burning because of how amazing the view was. I could try and describe it, but take a look for yourself!
I made my way to Berlin, home of the famous Berlin Wall among many other historical landmarks.
This brings me back to the title of this post, “Ich bin ein Berliner.” This famous quote from JFK has become a joke, because after a rough translation it means “I am a jelly donut.” After doing some research, it turned out to be an urban legend. Of course I got a jelly donut during my stay in Berlin, but made sure to get my fill of German food as well.
My two favorite foods I had during the week were both enjoyed in Berlin. I had these really nice Bavarian meatballs with a side of mashed potatoes (my favorite) and, of course, schnitzel! I knew very little about German cuisine going into the week, but I quickly learned how good it was.
I trekked over to the East Side Gallery, a stretch of the original Berlin Wall where artists have painted different murals on the east side. The opposite side of the wall has different signatures and “I was here” notes scattered across the 1.3 km walk. I was amazed by all the different colors blending together, and how bold all of the murals were. There were so many different messages thrown up on the wall, like “Stay Free” and “Get Human,” which are pictured below.
On a more somber note, I visited the Berlin Wall Memorial. Compared to the East Side Gallery, the memorial was more gray and quiet. It was opposite a cemetery, so it was not as lively as the busy street near the gallery. It was a similar atmosphere to the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, a memorial for the Jews killed during the Holocaust. It was in the city center of Berlin, yet the area seemed to be quieter than the rest. I always found that interesting, how everyone can come together and pay their respects to those who suffered during that awful period in history.
It came time to leave the great country of Germany. I had a lot of fun in the country, but I was ready to go back to an English speaking country.
I had a strange feeling overcome me when the plane touched down at Dublin airport. I found myself feeling at home in the Emerald Isle. I smiled at the thought of calling Ireland “home,” while walking through the airport, thinking back to when I first got to Ireland. I’ve only been here for a little over two months, and I’m already feeling nostalgic. How insane is that!
Luckily, I’ll have a little taste of my real New Jersey home when my family visits this week. Hopefully they’ll be bringing a bagel or two with them for me! More updates to come, make sure to follow my page or social medias to be notified when I post!