Pete and Lee take Munich

Pete and Lee take Munich

Another week, another blog and this time my dad Pete finally has one of his own! A few weeks ago I received a very random facetime from my dad in which he told me he and his friend Lee were coming to visit and go skiing in just 3 weeks. So yet again I was host and tour guide for Munich. The plan was to have a few days in the city and have a day skiing in the resort nearby which is really a fab idea because you get a city break and a mini ski holiday in just one weekend.

Thursday

The pair were due to arrive in Munich at around 2 so the plan was to meet them in Hauptbahnhof and help them find and sort out their airbnb. I found them quite easily as my Dad was the only ginger person, apart from me, for miles around (we are a rare breed here). It turned out their airbnb was right next to the Theresienwiese which is where Oktoberfest is held so I am lowkey an expert of the area.

We decided to have the most stereotypical and classic night in Munich so we went to Hofbrauhaus for dinner. All was going well until we were joined on our table by a raggedy looking German guy who seemed like he should have been trying to con us out of money or a beer or something but he wasn’t very good at it. He was rambling away about not having any money or a job then he’d randomly switch to a completely different story. At one point he got his guitar case out and showed us an onion he had apparently stolen before and then started cringingly playing us a song. This got the attention if the Hofbrauhaus security which I’ve never seen before and I didn’t even know was a thing. Turns out he hadn’t paid for his beer so he got chucked out. We had another beer in the brau haus next to Dad and Lee’s airbnb then I headed home on the train, which is always fun when you’re half cut.

Friday

I had my German class in the morning which meant that I avoided going on the free walking tour of Munich with Dad and Lee for the 5th time since I’ve been here. They also wanted to visit the BMW Museum which I’ve also been on and lowkey wouldn’t recommend unless you’re actually into cars which I guess is obvious but whatever. This meant that I could sneak in a cheeky post class nap before meeting up with them for tea.

I took them to Hans im Gluck which I’ve mentioned before on this blog but its honestly one of my favourite lunch/cocktail spots in the city. As per, my visitors were v v impressed with not only the burgers but also the design of the place. The name Hans im Gluck comes from a German fairytale so the restaurants are filled with real birch logs so it feels like a forest in there. There’s always a really nice chilled vibe in there and all of the waiting staff are 8+ and look like asos models.

After our burger feast we had a quick beer in a local Augustiner which is actually where I stole my stein from and its also the oldest brewery in Munich. I thought I should try a strong beer as it is stark bier season and it was actually quite nice but I could definitely see how the monks could live on just that over lent. I picked up my stash of crumpets, chocolate and crisps and went home for an early night before skiing in the morning.

Saturday

I’m sure Dad and Lee would rather have got to the mountains the night before and woken up already on the piste but I managed to convince them to hold on for a bit longer. We chose the 8am train to get there for the first lift at 9 so I was up ridiculously early to get to Hauptbahnhof and get our tickets. Luckily the train ride was really relaxing and had great views of the Alps.

Once there we swapped our train tickets for ski passes, picked up our ski stuff and were on a gondola up to the pistes within 30 minutes of getting off the train. I really found that after my previous week in France skiing it was so much easier to get back into it and I could definitely feel that I’ve gained a lot of muscle #gains. It took Dad and Lee a few runs down a nice wide blue to get back into it but soon we were ready to explore the other side of the mountain. Of course after an hour I was ready for my usual skiing 11am Gluhwein which really loosened me up ready to try some reds which were quite challenging or ‘tasty’ as Dad likes to call them. Soon it was time for lunch and Dad and Lee were tiring a bit so we carbed up on pasta which really had the adverse effect to be honest.

In the afternoon I was ready to really go for it and I even managed to lap Dad and Lee down a run twice! Garmisch is a lot bigger than I expected and we didn’t even make it to another nearby mountain called the Zugspitze which is Germany’s highest mountain. I’ll definitely be going back but probably next season as there’s only a few more weeks of this season. I’m still sure that my kid will be a million times better and faster than me but I can go every week for free so I’ll take that opportunity!

Before we headed back to the city, me and the lads went for some apres at a classic little place which was pumping out Schlager music and Pommes all over the place. The train ride home was a lot shorter as we all ended up falling asleep for the whole journey home. We freshened up at the airbnb before heading out again for tea.

We went to a really nice traditioanl Bavarian place me Mum and Dad found when they visited in November. Me and Lee both had schnitzels which were about the size of my face but gorgeous and dad had pork steak on a bed of kasespatzle which is basically german mac and cheese. The food was amazing, as per, but we were all nearly falling asleep by the time we were finished so decided to call it a night. We parted ways in Hauptbahnhof and said goodbye for the last time as their flight was early the next morning and I was confident that they could find their way to the airport without ending up in Austria or worse… France.

Phew blog finished and only a whole week after the actual content! This week has been interesting to say the least. I restarted my new language course which is a level up from before and the level that I need to work and study here. For me that’s such a motivation to do really well and make the most of the classes, and they have become a lot more challenging which I’m really enjoying. Another nice thing is that there are some new people in my class so I’ve been becoming closer to them and closer to the other au pairs. It’s so nice to have people here who are having a similar experience to me and can offer another point of view. On the other hand I am homesick like crazy for my friends back home and I can’t wait to be home with everyone at Easter!

 

France Ski Trip Part 2: Cara, Heather and the Goblet of Gluhwein

France Ski Trip Part 2: Cara, Heather and the Goblet of Gluhwein

Back to part 2 of mine and Cara’s skiing adventures. I’m currently writing this on the train on the way home from the airport… at stupid time in the morning. I think by the time I get home today I’ll have been on the train longer than I was on the plane from Geneva to Munich.

Wednesday

Like most ski holidays, the host of the chalet, Ben, had the day off on Wednesday so we had to sort out our own food. He left us croissants and pain au chocolats to cook for breakfast and showed us where everything was but after just over 3 days of being catered for it was like we’d never had to make our own breakfast before. Luckily we booked a restaurant for the evening and we had all already decided to try out the French speciality of Raclette.

We had a chill morning skiing then we headed back to the chalet at lunch as Cara’s sister Hebe was going to join us from Edinburgh for the last half of the week. Both Cara and Hebe hadn’t been skiing in 3 years but they were on another level to me. Partly because I feel like I’m gonna die 50% of the time and partly because I weigh about the same as a 12 year old so I have no hope at getting up any speed.

We came in from skiing a bit early in order to nap and mentally prepare ourselves for the cheese feast that night. The restaurant we chose was just across the road from the chalet so we could literally roll home through the snow and the end of the night. The walk over was only a hop over the road but walking through the thick snowfall was so magical so we made the most of it.

Once we were all seated and drinks (wine and ridiculously coloured cocktails) ordered we tried to look like we were thinking about what to order but really we all knew the only thing to go for was the Raclette. Raclette is basically just heating up cheese until its melting off the piece and then sliding it in the most food porny way onto a plate of potatoes, meats and pickles. Its honestly the nicest thing I’ve eaten in a while and I curse my childs stomach for not letting me eat more. Our table had a half wheel of Raclette cheese on a Raclette instrument (don’t think that’s the right word) for each half of the table and it’s safe to say we made the most of that wheel! I’ll admit that I was quite cocky at the start of the meal, claiming that I could eat loads but after 2 plates I was done and I let Cara, Teife and Mark (guy from the other group) absolutely destroy the cheese game.

Once we were stuffed full to the brim of cheese and happy that we had got our monies worth, we shuffled home through the snow which was still falling in massive thick snowflakes.

Thursday

The group awoke to a ‘cheese hangover’ as Cara had warned us and the thought of any food, let alone a full English was unbearable. We got out onto the slopes a tad later than usual that day but we did all have a good few pounds of extra cheese weight. Weirdly at lunch I managed to share a ham and cheese crepe with Teife quite happily, washed down with a Gluhwein of course.

We found some really good pistes to try and I think Thursday was probably my favourite day of the week because my boots had finally been broken in and didn’t stop the circulation to my feet anymore so I could fully enjoy the skiing and the views.

Friday

Friday was everyone’s last day skiing and I could only ski until midday so we started by skiing and catching lifts up to the highest point on the map for one last Gluhwein. In our gondola, Cara and I spoke to a really sweet French family. Well really Cara spoke to them and I stared until she translated the gobbledygook/French for me. To prove to the French people I wasn’t a complete idiot I told them the little French I know; Bonjour, je m’appelle… and of course the classic Voulez-vous coucher avec moi. The 13 year old boy had a right laugh at that and loved but I don’t think his parents were too pleased I’d just solicited their teenage son in a gondola.

I came down off the mountain quite reluctantly but quite fast as Cara and I wanted to see if we could get our top speed and average speed up on our YUGE app. I managed a cool 60.8km/h with an average speed of 20.5km/h which I blame on being stopped with a Gluhwein in my hand for half the holiday.

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Cara with aforementioned goblet of Gluhwein


I had already packed everything up so it was just a case of drying off my ski boots and catching my transfer down the mountain. The transfer was about 3 hours and quite bearable since I had a load of stuff downloaded on Netflix (best invention of my life) and I basically just zombied out. The problems started when I was dropped off at Geneva airport and started to look for my hotel which was advertised as being right next to the airport… it was not. After lugging my massive case all round Geneva airport with no hotel help desk in sight I went back outside only to spot my hotel. It was opposite the airport, with a motorway and dual carriageway in between. Apparently a free shuttle bus was meant to run from the airport but that was nowhere in sight and my call to the hotel failed as the receptionist didn’t speak any English or just didn’t understand my stressed out northern accent. I took this time to have a slight breakdown about being on my own in a completely foreign country, not being able to speak the language just thinking I’m not adult enough for this!!! Luckily google saved me and I managed to scramble onto a bus and follow some people with suitcases until I finally made it into my hotel.

I enjoyed the shower big enough for like 5 people and my first night in a double bed since Christmas and settled in for my 10 minutes of sleep.

Saturday

Not sure if I can count Friday and Saturday as 2 days because I only slept about 4 hours between them but anyway I was up ridiculously early to catch my flight back to Munich from Geneva. The airport wasn’t too stressful and they had about 500 people working on security so I whizzed through. The flight home was only 50 minutes and I was enjoying the views of snow covered mountains until I accidentally fell asleep. True to my pattern of the trip of being a mess, I woke myself with a snort/snore which startled the poor guy next to me.

Once I was back on home soil and on the s bahn I felt all the stress of the journey melt away. I’m glad I can now return to Munich and really feel like I’m going ‘home’. I’ve really grown here and been through a few changes in my life so I can feel that Munich is always going to be an important place for me. Hopefully I can stay and continue to grow and have all sorts of adventures here in the future.

I started this post on the train home and now I’m finishing it back home a few days later, in my true blogging form. All in all skiing was just amazing and just what I needed. To spend a week with Cara, who is the one person who really knows what its like to be in my situation was so lovely and now I can’t wait to be back at Easter and see all my fav people and most importantly drop it aaalll night in fax.

France Ski Trip: Calves, calves and carving

So this week is the biggest party weekend in Germany, Carneval! But of course I’ve left the country for a ski getaway with Cara and her fam. Perfect opportunity to blog tho and the insta opportunities are insaaane.

Saturday

Saturday began way too early at 5am as my flight was at 8:30 and I had my bag to check in. Luckily the flight was the shortest I’ve ever been on, just 50 minutes. I met Cara’s parents in Geneva airport and then we set off on our transfer up into the mountains. Cara arrived at the chalet half an hour before us in her blablacar and claimed us a good room.

The chalet has 4 rooms with room for 10 people so me and Cara have a room, Cara’s parents have another and then the other 2 rooms are taken by 5 randoms who we’ve now got to know and are really nice. The chalet is looked after by this guy called Ben whos basically like me; doesn’t really care about the job but just wants to get paid to be here. He makes us cooked breakfast every morning, makes a cake for afternoon tea which is just left out for us to graze on after skiing and then makes us a 3 course meal in the evening.

We went out to pick up our ski hire which was a farce as usual and then had a quick beer in a local bar to watch the rugby. The bar had a live musician on every night and that afternoon there was an amazing brass band playing outside in the snow who looked a bit cold but were defo having a good time. Soon it was time to head back to the chalet for dinner and to meet the other people staying with us. We all did the weird adult handshake thing when we first met which I don’t think is supposed to be weird but it just feels so grown up to me and I have hand shake anxiety that my handshake is too lame and I’ll be judged for not breaking their hand. Anyway…. We had a lovely meal and got to know each other. It turned out they were all from Cambridge Uni so Cara exploded but she got a good inside opinion of what its really like to go there and live there. We soon discovered that the chalet was advertised as ‘unlimited wine’ so decided to take full advantage and accidentally got quite drunk.

We stumbled into our room at about 1am and then remembered that Cara had to write her daily diary. Lets just say that its quite unintelligible to read and understand now, lots of hashtags and she even kindly linked the actual website address of my blog into her hand written diary which only she reads.

Sunday

After the previous nights festivities we dragged ourselves up at 7:50 for breakfast at 8 and we managed it surprisingly well despite our slightly hungover state. We had a full cooked breakfast which me and Cara treated like an other-worldly being #europeanproblems.

Me, Cara and Cara’s parents headed out to explore the pistes and lowkey learn to ski again. We had lunch at the very very top of a mountain and enjoyed the view. After another few hours of skiing we headed back to the chalet and just at the very last run we had the first fall of the holiday, Cara’s mum. Of course then I immediately also fell over watching her fall so at least I also got my first fall out of the way.

Back at the chalet we finally felt the best feeling in the world; taking ski boots off. Tea was chicken in tarragon sauce, veg and homemade wedges then spiced peach crumble which tasted like England with the crumble but Christmas with all the spices. After the previous night we headed to bed straight after tea which gave me and Cara to write actually readable summaries of the day.

 

Monday

Monday was the last day before the snow was due to start on Tuesday so me and Cara took the opportunity to get out on our own and go all the way to another valley nearby. I always prefer skiing when you’re travelling somewhere and on an adventure so Monday was really fun. We finished our journey with a gondola ride across a valley with a glass bottom with a view of a 350m drop. We had a quick rest from our tiring gondola trip with a 5 Euro hot chocolate. I considered having a gluhwein but then realised it was 10:30 in the morning and even I have a limit. We had a study of the map and saw a purple piste called le piste mauve which turned out to be a piste sponsoured by Milka which promised a Milka cow to take selfies with and FREE CHOCOLATE!!! With this in mind we skied as fast as we ever have before towards the promised land.

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Me and Cara with our new friend

Despite our reservations the Milka piste lived up to all of our expectations (apart from my hope that the snow on the piste would be painted actual Milka purple). There was a cardboard cutout of a purple cow and even a guy in a cow suit who was super keen to take selfies with us. A woman dressed in full Milka merch took our pic and gave us a mini Milka egg  and we skied away with our holiday and lives complete.

 

We had a light lunch at the top of the mountain then headed back down to la plagne and skied right to our chalet door.

 

Tuesday

We awoke on Tuesday to snow still falling and a good covering of snow on the pistes. Unfortunately visibility was quite bad but the snow was so good to ski on so we headed up the mountain to see if we could get above the snow. Of course up the mountain the snow was even worse and it was virtually impossible to see any definition on the snow so you basically had to just turn wherever and hope for the best. I think once it stops snowing and we’re just left with nice perfect powder.

We came in from skiing a bit earlier than usual because  we literally couldn’t see what we were doing and we really felt like having a chill afternoon. I started off the chill afternoon catching up on social media in bed but ended up having an accidental 2 hour nap. We had dinner which was a cheesy, potato, bacon bits filled thing which has a name but its French and I’m not about that. Now I’m writing this up while we’re all playing rubbish trivia games and drinking wine in the living room, perfect evening.

Baguleys take Munich:Part 2!

Baguleys take Munich:Part 2!

Finally I’ve made a start on this blog! I’ve been distracted from writing this week as my host mum has been away so I’ve had the kids every day  and usually if I’m not in the right mood I just can’t blog. After plenty of reminders from my mum I finally sat down to write this last night, only to become incredibly distracted which ended in me booking flights to visit Ely in Southampton at the end of November. Certainly an expensive distraction but I’m sure it’ll be worth it! Anyway back to last weekend and we left off about to start Saturday.

Saturday

So Saturday began much like the first 2 days, freezing cold and with mum and dad turning up late because mum was doing her hair. Still we set off for a walk around the Olympic park to show dad where I lived in August and to have a peek in the Olympic stadium. Pete was satisfied with my former accommodation and was especially happy when I showed him the student Bierstube (student pub). We walked up to the Olympic stadium and went into the first stadium which was holding a sports fair for the Munich marathon which was happening the next day. We had a look into the stadium and were quite disappointed by the small, slightly shabby hall we found. Surely this couldn’t be the ‘impressive’ stadium used for the 1972 Olympics?! We moved on to the swimming centre which was slightly more impressive and seemed like a viable Olympic location. Finally we stumbled upon a much grander, main Olympic stadium. Apparently we had wrongly judged the small Olympic stadium as the main one so we were now satisfied with the proper stadium, even if it was kind of dilapidated and looked (as it was) straight out of the 70s. Finished by our high-brow inspection of the Olympic stadiums we wandered through the park (becoming incredibly lost which I would never admit to my parents) and emerged on the other side on a random dual carriageway. We scurried over the carriageway (probably illegally)
and found a tram stop in the middle. I had never been on a tram during my time in the city so it was a momentous occasion… not.

Once safely back in Marienplatz we were told that our 3rd Reich tour was cancelled as our tour guide had an ’emergency’ which was probably just he’d had a few too many the night before and couldn’t be arsed. We booked in to do the tour the next day and set off for a wander through the uni district, partly to find a cafe to refuel but mainly because that’s the way the tram we randomly boarded was going. We found a little cafe and ordered our drinks even if there was no free wifi; a must-have on a Heather/Laura pitstop. When our drinks arrived we thought the waitress was having a laugh. Mums coffee came in what can only be described as a bowl. No handle and just the right size for a portion of Crunchy Nut! She had to drink it with two hands which was a major problem at the beginning when it was quote ‘burning hot’. I had ordered a Coke for a sugar boost but that came with what I’m pretty sure was a thimble to drink out of. Pete’s beer came in a normal glass so he was the only one who looked normal drinking his.

Thankfully our evening meal went much better. In August I had been introduced to a lovely Bavarian restaurant which specialised in a schnitzel marinated in sweet mustard and coated in pretzel breadcrumbs… amazing! Obviously I could no longer afford this on my student budget so my parents visit was the perfect excuse to go back, lol. We sat down and were given English menus, thank god. Previously in August Beth (a girl on my language course and queen of the nude Eisbach) had introduced me to a drink called a Hugo. Its basically prosecco, elderflower syrup, sparkling water and a load of mint leaves but is absolute heaven! Me and mum downed 2 each and promised to bring this drink back to England on her return. Food-wise, dad had the pork and dumpling classic, I had the schnitzel and honestly I can’t remember what mum had… I’ve whatsapped her but lets just presume she had some pork/veg combination. The food went down so well and just confirmed dads obsession with Bavarian food. So big thank you and shoutout to Isabel for introducing me to the Weinbauer restaurant and shoutout to Beth for introducing me to Hugos!

 

Sunday

Sunday was our last day together so of course we had to become experts on the Nazi history of Munich. We started the day in classic Baguley style, with Pete cooking us bacon and eggs. It wasn’t quite the same as a proper Baguley breakfast but it was amazing all the same. Breakfast done we hopped back on the u bahn to have a look round the nazi museum to prepare us for the 3rd Reich tour later on.

The nazi museum is really called the ‘Munich Documentation Centre for the History of National Socialism’ and I’d say its well worth a visit. There is a lot of text so you’re basically stood reading for a few hours but its so interesting and goes so in depth. It’s especially interested how Munich dealt with it after the war. For a good few years everyone refused to speak about it and the Allies attempted to completely de-nazify the city. But really Munich was such an important part of the Nazi movement that the city couldn’t avoid and ignore it so now there are plenty of memorials and educational points around the city to show what happened there.

So 2 hours later and now basically historians we headed to Marienplatz (yes I live there) to get a quick coffee and a fancy. We found a cafe facing onto the square and had a good half hour of people watching. The square we were looking at had the previously mentioned boob statue in it. On this particular day it had been taken over by a group of hobos sat around its base just hanging out. At intervals they got up to let a group of tourists get some pics of the statue and occasionally the tourists got the hobos to take pictures for them. Who needs a selfie stick when there’s free homeless photographers around!

We met up with our replacement tour guide who was a tiny German guy from Frankfurt called Mark. When I say tiny I mean shorter than me and he was wearing a massive trench coat which made him look like a kid trying on his dads coat. Anyway he was lovely and an amazing tour guide. We walked all round the city for about 3 hours, stopping every so often for Mark to explain what happened in that spot and what happened to it after the war. My favourite place was an art gallery built by the Nazis to show German ‘proper’ art, originally named Haus der deutschen Kunst. All art deemed unworthy or against the Nazi ideals was displayed in a small exhibition with writing next to the paintings explaining why they were bad and encouraging people to mock them. It turned out that this exhibition was much much more popular then the ‘proper German’ art probably because the German art was quite boring and people wanted to see these ‘un-German’ but actually good pieces of art before they were destroyed. Nowadays the gallery is called Haus der Kunst and showcases all the art that the Nazis would have hated like progressive art. Overall the tour made me appreciate how historical Munich is as a city and how much its grown and come to terms with what happened here. It is still a modern, rich and progressive city but it keeps hold of its roots, good or bad.

After the tour it was time to go back to the airbnb and get packed up. Too soon it was time for my parents to leave and on the way to the u bahn station I just wanted to jump on the train with them and be back at home again. But I have a job and a life here now and unfortunately I can’t be Trins age again with no cares in the world and my friends a bus ride away. We said goodbye on the platform and reminded each other that its only a few weeks til I’m home again. Since they left I’ve thought a lot and been quite homesick but I just can’t imagine not living here in Munich, I just love it so much.

Phew so the longest blog ever is nearly over! Just checked my easyjet app and its 20 days today until I’m back in England. I’ll tell you now, I’m having about 7 packs of Walkers crisps, a proper brew and a massive portion of fish and chips as soon as I get home! Shoutout to the DSU team (my mums work) who I’ve heard are enjoying the blog. Thanks for the support and thanks for putting up with Laws and her cackling on a daily basis! Shoutout also to my mum for passing on her cackle to me and of course for bringing over my winter coat. This blog is way way too long but we’ll be back to the usual weekly roundup next time.

Baguleys take Munich:Part 1!

Baguleys take Munich:Part 1!

So this weekend my parents visited me in Munich and its safe to say we crammed as much as possible into the 4 days. Thursday to Sunday we barely stopped laughing and when we did it was to eat and drink some of the ‘best food and beer I’ve ever had’ as my dad put it. I’ve just written some ‘brief’ notes for this weekend and that was 200 words in itself so this blog may turn out to be a 2-parter. So here we go!

Thursday

I knew my parents were on their way to Munich when I received a torrent of whatsapp messages from my mum about the quality of men on the plane (much better than my flight apparently) and an unsympathetic comment about my dads fear of flying. Within 2 hours they were out of the airport and straight on a train into the city. I cycled down to Olympiazentrum where they were staying which is only a 10 minute ride but due to my complete lack of fitness took me 10 minutes and a bit extra for rest/instagram stops. When I finally rolled into the u bahn station I was greeted by a tirade of hugs and kisses and then teased about my new ‘very European’ look.

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Me looking very European with a bike I borrowed off a 12 year old girl

For our first meal I thought we’d dive right in and go to a real Bavarian restaurant. The place we went into was packed but in true Bavarian style we shared a table with a lovely German family who only seemed to speak about 3 words of English but my parents have the same level of German so it worked quite well. Thankfully we were given English menus so I wasn’t on translating duty just yet. I recommended anything with Käsespätzle (seen previously in my instagram) to my dad and safe to say he became utterly obsessed with the mac n cheese style dish. We ordered our food, toasted with our beers and settled in to have a catch up. Some way through the night, Pete (my dad) came back from the bathroom looking very confused. He explained that a guy in the bathroom had tried to have a conversation with him in German so he just laughed, said ja and ran out. This was the beginning of a weird theme of random Germans talking to my dad all over the place during the weekend. Personally I don’t think he looks that German and I’ve never even seen a ginger German guy before so he must just have that kind of face. He did manage a quick ‘wunderbar’ to the waitress after about 10 minutes of coaching from me so I guess hes taken the first step to fluency (lol). Once we were full on beer, pork and potatoes we decided to head back to their airbnb in Olydorf to sample some of the ever cringe-worthy German tv and to chill out. A relaxing evening ended up with me translating every single thing that was said on tv and trying in vain to teach my dad some German.

 

Friday

Friday was our first full day together so we booked onto a walking tour which me and mum knew would be good as we’ve been on it twice already (why). Tbh every tour is different because each tour guide does it slightly differently. It is really the best way to see the city and I think that by the end my dad really appreciated how beautiful the city is. His exact words were ‘this is quite different to London and Manchester’ but I guess thats a good sign in his eyes. Getting around the city turned out to be quite easy as my mum had done remembered the u bahns well from her many visits and even dug out the map I was given at the start of my language course. My dad, on the other hand, wasn’t such an expert on the system and just followed along with us.

The 3 hour walking tour worked up quite a thirst so we dived into the Hofbrauhaus for a quick beer. The atmosphere in there is so lively and pleasant even if it is full of tourists. Although the band has to be one of the laziest bands I’ve ever known. They play one song then the traditional beer song ‘Ein Prosit’ (youtube it, its weird af) then sit and have a beer for a good half hour. Once we had finished our beers and fought our way through the stream of tourists to get out of Hofbrauhaus we wandered back up to Marienplatz to decide where to go next. On the way I took one of my favourite pics of all time.

There is a famous statue next to the square of a woman with one breast exposed so naturally it is lucky to touch the boob. After hundreds of year of this tradition of groping a statue for luck, the boob is now worn down to the bronze underneath. My dad found this hilarious and insisted on having a classic touristy pic with the ‘lucky boob’.

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Pete with his new friend

We left the poor statue to a photoshoot with a group of Chinese tourists with selfie sticks galore and headed to the Englisch Garden to check out the park and especially the surfers. It was about 10 degrees out but there were still about 10 surfers taking turns on the river wave…crazy people. The river was freezing in 30 degree weather so you wouldn’t even be able to pay me to get in it now! The surfers are so mesmerising but after 10 minutes stood in the cold next to the river Pete was ready to move on. Unfortunately for him, me and mum had spotted a surfer who looked just like Daniel Radcliffe and we were not about to miss the opportunity to see him flailing about in a wetsuit! Eventually Daniel gave up so we moved on through the park.

One perk of the freezing temperatures was that even the most dedicated nudist wouldn’t risk freezing their precious assets off, so our stroll was nude-free. Thank god! Another of Munich’s sights done, we headed back to the apartment for some food. Being the culturally-immersed family that we are, we got kebabs and pizza from the student takeaway. This was the takeaway which had kept me alive throughout my time in August so I felt it was an important spot to show my parents.

Phew 2 days down and its only taken 1000 words.. oh god. As I predicted this will be a 2 part blog so I’ll post Saturday and Sunday in the next few days! Also a very special shoutout to Lewis for his birthday!!! Have a fab day and I’ll see you in a few weeks!

 

 

Oktoberfest Finally…

 

Ugh I never know how to start these! I’m now at the end of week 3 here which sounds so crazy now I think about it. I’m not really as homesick this time as I was last month probably because I don’t have any results day trauma and the fact I’m in near-constant contact with my friends and family on various group chats and facetimes.

So firstly I finally fond another au pair in the city who’s my age, English and up for the sesh! We chatted for a bit on an au pair facebook page then met up for lunch. Her story was quite similar to mine in that she didn’t want to go to uni yet and pay for a course she may regret doing so she was taking a year or two off to learn German and earn some money. I invited her to join me and another au pair at Oktoberfest that evening so we ended up dirndl shopping an hour after meeting! The other au pair eventually flaked on us but we had a fab time at Oktoberfest with just us two.

Onto the main event of this blog… Oktoberfest! Me and my new friend Sarah met at Marienplatz (check out my latest insta 😉 ) then u bahned to the entrance. Shes only been in the city a week and speaks barely any German so I led the way towards the blaring music and mental lights of the fairground. There’s a constant stream of Tracht (lederhosen and dirndls) wearing drunk people coming to and from the entrance so its not difficult to find. And I guess there is the 3 rollercoasters and hundreds of fairground rides you can see from a mile off! So we head to the nearest tent, manage to squeeze in and then discover that to order you have to be sat at a table.  The problem with this its the point in the night when everyone is stood on the benches at their tables and are dancing and singing along to the torrent of weird beer songs the band is playing. On our way through the tent I spot a space on a table and managed to wrangle my way up onto the bench using my ‘feminine charm’. The guy who hoisted me up next to him asked where I was from and once they found out I was English but could speak German, I was in. Me and Sarah jumped on their beer order and even learnt some German beer songs. One thing about German beer steins is that they’re bloody heavy which really doesn’t help when you have the arm strength of a 12 year old girl and you’re trying to balance on a wobbling bench being shoved from all sides by crazy drunk Germans. Even so the atmosphere was amazing, everyone singing along to hundred year old drinking songs but acting like they were listening to a normal club song. Just absolutely crazy but absolutely German!

In the first of many bad decisions that night, we decided we must go on some fairground rides. The first was a Twister-type thing with the usual mental music and someone shouting ‘Schrei zu schneller’ which is the German version of ‘scream if you want to go faster’. This whizzed us around enough that we felt like we’d had another few beers but somehow Sarah convinced me to have a jager and coke with her (why oh why). This apparently improved my German more than a hundred Howarth classes could and I proceeded to have a chat with some guys also at the bar and got me and Sarah into their round of shots (for free ofc). One beer, a jager and coke and a shot down, the obvious next step was to go in a fun house. I had been in one with my host family and said how funny it would be while drunk but wow I was not prepared.

We pay our 4 Euros each and get handed cardboard glasses like old-school 3D ones but these were basically beer goggles. With our beer goggles on top of beer goggles we entered the house. Every obstacle took about 3 times longer than usual and everyone was hysterically laughing the whole way round. Poor souls laid on the sides of the walkways binned out or stumbled in the opposite direction until they were gently turned around and shoved towards the exit by bemused workers. The glasses made all the lights blend together and made walking in a straight line impossible so I ditched mine quickly in order to survive. The main challenge was a series of spinning tubes you had to walk through which ended up filled with people spinning round on the floor, trying to drag themselves out. Weirdly I had a newly found skill at this so I ran through the tubes without falling over and even managed to run back through to help Sarah out. This new skill quickly betrayed me as the last tube was quicker than the last but my cockiness got the better of me and I launched myself in. Not a good idea. I immediately went A over T and ended up flailing around in the tube until someone slowed it down long enough for me to escape. Me and Sarah finally found the exit and decided that this was a good time to conclude our first Oktoberfest experience and hop on a u bahn home.

Overall it was just such a funny crazy but amazing night and I’m so excited to go back on Sunday and do it all over again! Haven’t done a shoutout in a while so this one goes to my mum and dad for making the 900 mile journey to see their favourite offspring next week (lol to the parents complaining about their kids going to uni literally a few miles away) and for bringing me various winter clothes and most importantly a hand luggage bag so I can hop on over to England to visit the Lanc squad next month!

Zurück nach Fax

I’m back in fax and I’m feeling so weird about it. On one hand I’m so happy to be back with everyone I love but I also feel like I’m just on holiday here and that this isn’t really my home anymore. Got my flight back on the 12th and I’ll be making a beeline right to one of the three beer gardens in Munich airport to quench this German beer craving.

Anyway I’m gonna try to blog about my last few days in Munich even though its been nearly a week… (cries). So Friday night was to be the last night for the group and our final goodbye. Of course this meant half of us fell out, major whatsapp drama occurred and the few in the group I had tried to explain ‘beef’ to, finally understood. The night started quite well, Beth’s German boyfriend suggested a club called Nachtgalerie and we managed to corral the group to the new location (with some help from our leader Miguel). Once there we confidentially strolled up to the entrance only to be stopped as we were ‘too young’. We were very confused, partly due to the language barrier and partly because no matter how much we waved our IDs in his face the bouncer wouldn’t let us in. Eventually he revealed that this was the over 40s section of the club and that we were definitely too young. With this knowledge we backed away from the door and the worst-sounding club ever and found the normal (non-OAP) entrance. The entrance to the club was 10 Euros so I was unsure but when I saw that shots were all 1 Euro and Sourz were 50 CENTS I was prepared to move in and live my life in that club. The music was fab and they even had a stage in the middle of the floor so I was in heaven.

Sidenote: for some context of the weird German club songs I keep going on about listen to: Monsta by Culcha Candela, Ding by Seeed, Traum by Cro.

Saturday was a chill day and I somehow managed to pack and clean my apartment in a hungover, illness ridden state. I dragged myself to the English garden for one last chill in the sun and we ended up having a last supper with the whole course group in the beer garden next to the Chinesischer Turm. During that last meal and beer together I realised how lucky I was to have had this experience. Spending a month with people from all round the world, talking about everything and anything in a variety of languages. As we were leaving everyone offered their home country as a holiday destination, promising a free bed and a tour of their home anytime. I’m so glad I’ve done this now when I’m so young because now my world is so much bigger than just England and Germany. I could go just about anywhere and have a friend or even start a new life. Anyone considering a year abroad I say just do it.

On Sunday I was chucked out of my little Olympic bungalow at 10am even though I was due to fly at 10pm. I checked my suitcase into a locker in Hauptbahnhof and set off for one last day in Munich. Luckily, all of the art galleries and museums are 1 Euro entry on Sundays so I had a right tour of the top culture spots of Munich. Probably my most cultured day in Munich so far but (of course) I still picked up a beer to drink between museums. After my cultural morning I was feeling lazy so I decided to put my new German knowledge to the ultimate test and went to the cinema. I saw Ghostbusters which I think was a bit of a cop-out on my part as it was all dubbed and very easy to understand. Still I was proud of myself and was rested enough to pick up my suitcase and set off for the airport.

The airport was quite an ordeal with very intense security and a 15 minute queue for passport control but I guess after the recent tragedy in the city you can’t blame them for being super safe. At the gate someone came to apologise for our delay and explain why the plane was late in German so I had to translate for a group of guys on a stag do (bloody English). I feel bad for my fellow passengers as my Munich disease meant I was coughing up a lung every  minutes the whole flight. It felt surreal to be back in Manchester and back with my family. Ted told me he’d read my blog and that I need to cut down on my drinking which was a lovely welcome home and just makes me look forward to him being 18 and out on the town with me even more!

Got so much more to blog about but this one is already so long already so I’ll finish here. On Wednesday night drunk me left me a blog note to include (ANOTHER) shoutout for Ed for giving me a drink of his cider  and to give Hamish and Lewis a shoutout but apparently drunk me couldn’t come up with a worthy reason so I’ve got to ‘shoehorn’ them in! BTW this is the last time I take drunken blog requests. Thanks to everyone I’ve seen in England so far and I’m so glad you’re all enjoying the blog so much, I’ll defo be keeping it up from now on!