I went to Germany...one of my favorite countries, falling just slightly behind the Dominican Republic when it comes to friendly people and delicious food.
Okay, maybe I like Germany MORE...but those beaches in the DR.....
So, I went to Dusseldorf, Germany, last week. One of my best friends was invited on a blogger press trip to cover Carnival, and she asked me to come and hang with her in her hotel room. I wasn't part of the trip, but a free hotel room during peak season?
UM. YES, PLEASE. MUCHAS GRACIAS.
So I went. It was everything I thought it would be. Mulled wine. Beer. CURRY WURST AND FRIES WITH MAYO.
So much curry wurst.
My heart sings, y'all. Literally jumps out of my chest and breaks into song.
Stefanie was busy with her blogger duties, and I had all day long to roam the streets and get into trouble, day drink, catch candy from random parades, find tiny neighborhood bars and stuff my face.
And make out with cute boys.
More on that later.
On our first full day, I found myself in the middle of the Children's Parade, which, as you can imagine, was boring as fuck.
I did manage to catch some candy though, so that was cool. There were stalls selling food, drink and local crafts, so of course I ate curry wurst and mulled wine...it's a delightful combination.
I ended that day with dinner alone in a Greek restaurant, where my waiter fell in love with me (so he said) and tried to get me to go out with him, but I wasn't interested in meeting Greek men WHILE IN GERMANY. HAVE YOU SEEN THE MEN IN GERMANY? They are beautiful.
So, on day 2, my friend had blogger duties and I was free to wander the streets, once again. If you aren't familiar with my travel style, that's kind of my preferred traveling style - wandering aimlessly. Somehow, my heart always leads me to exactly what I am looking for, exactly where I need to be - where the action is, most of the time.
Day two led me to a street party that was OFF THE CHAIN. There was literally Jager and popcorn and costumes and handsome German man running amok.
I need to learn to speak German.
I was completely and utterly alone, with only my Giraffe hat as a costume, and I had the TIME OF MY LIFE.
I received a text from Stefanie in the latter part of the afternoon, advising me that she had made it to her hotel, and I set off to find her...and literally ran into a young man dressed as a bellhop who grabbed me by the shoulders and kissed me.
I think he was pretty young.
I didn't care.
People were throwing confetti in the air and we had glitter in our eyelashes and we laughed.
I was pretty drunk. I'd been drinking all day.
Stefanie and I went out that evening, back to the street party, but by then, it had pretty much died down and the crowds were gone and the streets were full of trash. I mean, they were REALLY FULL OF TRASH.
The next day...that was the really fun day.
That was the day of the Karnival Parade, and since Stefanie was on a float and gone the majority of the day, I was left on my own.
I went out. I purchased as many canned beverages as my purse would hold, which was only 6 drinks.
I found a street where people were gathering...
Did I mention that they make Mojitos IN A CAN IN GERMANY?!
AND WINE. Such deliciousness, canned, ready for easy transport in your purse or pocket.
But back to the parade and the huge party in the streets, and the German friends I made that day.
There I was, minding my own business (not really), when I made friends with a group of 20-something Germans.
We became fast friends. There were two women in the group and they were sweet and fun to hang out with, but they quickly lost interest in the exotic American woman partying on her own in their city.
Their friends, however, did not.
Especially the really cute blonde one.
He was so cute. Although, I can't remember his name at this point.
I wish I had thought to trade social media with him or something, but after his friend Justin realized that I was American - and he was an American who had moved to Germany - well, you know how that goes. He called dibs and Blondie wandered off.
We had a ton of fun together and then we ran off so that I could find Stefanie's float in the parade...we lost each other, then found each other a little later, after I'd hung out with a Russian dude who didn't speak any English and drank most of his vodka. Thanks, whoever you were!
Then we lost each other again, and I met another nice German guy giving out free hugs. A REAL GERMAN GUY THIS TIME. And did I mention the free hugs? I am a sucker for free hugs.
I don't remember his name either, most likely because I was pretty sure he was about 18 or under and I wasn't that impressed with his drunken, lackluster free hugs.
Then Justin found me again.
HOW? There were 600,000 people in Dusseldorf that day, yet Justin and/or his friends found me THREE DIFFERENT TIMES.
He and his friends were going to Subway for dinner after the parade, but clearly, I would prefer Curry Wurst over Subway, so he left his friends and took me "on a date." We grabbed a beer, partied in the street a little, then to dinner.
Seriously, I don't know how I get so lucky, I keep meeting these total sweetheart guys when I travel!
We went back to the hotel to get Stefanie and drag her out to a nightclub together. It took us a while to talk her into going, but we eventually did. I think this was the photo we took to send to her husband so that he knew I didn't pick up some total freak. Stefanie does not normally go to clubs. I felt it was only right that I tell him about my plans.
Also, her husband is also a great friend of mine and I wanted to show off the hot young guy I picked up. *evil laugh*
I know, he had a beard. Gross. But LOOK AT THAT HAIR. And his smile.
Did I also mention that he bought me beers and DINNER?
I think I've had better luck with German men (or American expats living in Germany) than American men since my divorce.