Today was probably the best day of the trip. It was a completely free day, so I got to live my dream and visited Salzburg, the filming location for one of my favorite childhood movies: the sound of music. We had to get up fairly early to take a train to Munich for about 45 minutes and then 2 hours to Salzburg. We got to see lush and beautiful gardens. Massive fountains everywhere and the alps in the background. We hiked up to an old nunnery used in the film with some beautiful architecture. It is up on the hill overlooking the city. A bit further up was a castle! There, we had one of the most breathtaking views I have ever seen. The entire city before us with the alps and rivers running in between. We stayed there a good while just soaking it in. We decided we needed ice cream immediately and briefly ran through an ancient church and gorgeous cemetery with a serene garden. Oh, and also we passed Mozart’s birthplace, a now popular tourist attraction. All of that business was great, but we crossed over the Mozartsteg bridge used in the film and laid on the banks of the Salzach river for an hour just to rest and relax in the sun and the cool breeze. People come and go, enjoying the scenery and the beauty of the outdoors. After an hour of rest and recuperation, we stopped for a Doner, something I have been eating a lot of. And then we took the long ride back, resting and preparing for the return home. I am not sure if I am ready to leave just yet, but I think I will only appreciate this trip more with time. I am so thankful for the opportunity to check so many things off my bucket list and to revel in the beauty of the world. It’s almost time to head home… but that’s ok. Good things have to come to an end, don’t they?
This is a brief recap of the fullest day of the trip, but I feel it doesn’t need any more description. What makes it meaningful is twofold: It is both the experience of seeing something new and seeing it with friends.