I have gotten four hours of sleep in the past two days combined but regardless, it has been a good few days. We are all exhausted but happy to finally be here in Germany after about twenty-four hours of traveling. We left Pitt’s campus at 3am on Saturday and our flight from Pittsburgh to Newark, New Jersey left at seven o’clock am. We had a whopping nine-hour layover at Newark but filled it with card games, airport hide-and-go-seek, and spending an obscene amount of money in the airport stores because for some reason everything is three times more expensive than normal in airport stores.
After the nine-hours slowly passed, we boarded for our second flight. The plane was supposed to take off at 5:30pm but we left at 6:30pm. On the plane, I watched Moana (which was adorable and I recommend to anyone who has not seen it). Then I tried to sleep. I ended up getting only about two hours of sleep but I guess a little sleep is better than no sleep.
We arrived in Munich at 8:10am in German time (although it felt like 2:10am to us). Then we took an hour bus ride to Augsburg, the city in which we are staying for the next two weeks. Shortly after arrival at our hotel in Augsburg we ate sandwiches and the German signature snack, a pretzel (which was quite salty but good). Then we hit the ground running and took a tour of Augsburg. We took the tram into the city from the hotel. Just to know Germans don’t waste time… as soon as the doors shut on the tram it abruptly starts… if one doesn’t know this one might hypothetically end up being unprepared and one might fail to balance and instead fall on, and thus upset, a German local when the train lurches forward. Just saying.
Once in the main part of the city we explored. We went to the city’s main plaza. We went to the Cathedral (der Dom) of St. Maria. It was beautiful. It has the oldest stained glass windows in all of Germany. They date back to the 11th century. After we visited the town hall which had a beautiful room which was called the Golden Hall. It was very intricate and practically every surface was covered in gold. After going to the town hall, we walked down Maxilianstraβe which had the old Fugger palace. The Fugger’s were a wealthy family in Augsburg and had a large impact on the history of the city. They created the next place we visited, the Fuggerei. The Fuggerei was a place that poor people could live. The rent for one year was € 0.88 (about $1). In return, the residents have to pray over the Fugger kings three times a day. People still live there today. Visiting the Fuggerei was the highlight of today. It had cool houses with beautiful green ivy covering many of the walls. After visiting the Fuggerei, we went to a restaurant for dinner. We had soup, chicken and spätzle, and fresh fruit. It was pretty good. After we went back to the hotel.
Things I have noticed: Germans are smart. They have a lot of cool designs. The buses come on time which I love. They sell alcohol in vending machines which is weird. I really appreciate how organized everything is.
Well that’s enough for now, friends. I am excited to get some sleep. Thanks for reading.