To Austria we go! Today was our free day and what would be more exciting than going to a different country? And that’s exactly what we did! All 19 of us decided to visit Salzburg, Austria and let me say it was one of the memorable train rides of my entire life!
The day started around 7am, since I had to shower and do some last minute packing because by the time that we came back it would be too late since we had to be up really early the next morning to head back to the States. So I woke early to do that and took a nice warm shower to get myself prepared for the day ahead! I then headed downstairs for breakfast around 9 and loaded on my favorite croissants, cheese and scrambled eggs. I tried some blueberry juice today which was very inetring, it was less bitter than American cranberry juice and I really liked it and it was kicking myself a bit for not getting it beforehand. But then in the midst of all of this testing, I realized that this would be my last breakfast in Germany, which made me really sad because I wasn’t ready to leave the great bread of Germany yet, so I made sure to pack a few extra rolls for the journey to Austria!
After breakfast, we still had some time before we had to leave, so we hung out in the lobby. Then the time came and we headed to the train station which was right behind our hotel and was about a 5 minute walk. Although, when we arrived and checked the departure board, it said that the train was canceled and we all were so puzzled because we thought trains in Germany were efficient and realizable. Then, all I heard was , “RUN to platform 3, there’s another train going to Munich ”. So the 19 American students started sprinting through the terminal to get to the train, and luckily we made it because if not we would have missed our connecting train in Munich to Salzburg. The train to Munich, I passed out in so I can’t remember much, but through this trip, I have realized that I have a sixth sense because any time that I sleep on transportation, I always and I mean ALWAYS wake up 5 minutes before we reach and so I say the same buildings like the ones when we came to the city on Saturday. Then, the next connecting train made us wait for another 45 minutes because of a technical problem with the train. The announcer even was saying that we had to get off of the train and then we all did and were about to find an alternative to get to Salzburg, they said that the train was fixed and we took off 5 minutes later. The journey to Salzburg was so scenic and beautiful!
In Salzburg, our first stop was lunch! Lunch was pretty filling with a burger and waffle fries, which are my favorite, so I was satisfied! After, we headed over to this garden area, which had a long stretch of trees and a decorated courtyard. This then took us to Mozart’s Geburtshaus (birth house) and though we didn’t have time to visit inside, we saw the yellow building from the outside and then bought some souvenirs. We walked further and hit a path which took us to the Salzburg Fortress. We went up in a sky lift, where we arrived at the top of the city. We headed further in and went inside of a museum which told the story of the fortress and how it was used throughout history, pictures of generals and even soldier uniforms. We even walked up the panoramic view of the city which was breathtaking especially during golden hour, it truly made all of the walking worth it! Here’s a picture:
By that time, we had to get back to the train station so we could arrive back in Augsburg. For dinner, we had McDonald’s and as I write this, I realize how ironic and full circle that meal was because the first meal we had in Europe was McDonald’s and the last meal is also McDonald’s. We got on the train without a problem and then the most scary part of the trip happened. We were checked by border control and one of friend’s did not have her passport on her, just her id, and then border police started grilling us about who we were and where we were going. Luckily after much explaining and convincing and realizing that we were all in one big group, they let us go. But in that time frame, we were all by ourselves and it felt like there was no way to get out of it. But then that wasn’t even our concern then, our concern was that that check took 40 minutes and that meant we only had 10 minutes till our connecting train back in Augsburg. But then we ended up reaching there 20 minutes earlier than expected, we all thanked german engineering and then hopped on the last train ride of the trip back to our home city.
Today’s trip made me believe in my philosophy even more that “Everything happens for a reason” and today could not be more a testament to that. Even though everything did not go “smoothly as planned”, the memories I made today will last me a lifetime!