As I said my last goodbyes at the airport of my beloved city, Bangalore, passing through the entrance and looking back at the faces of my friends and family for one last time, my mind was blank due to a myriad of emotions that were taking hold of me. The time had come to board the Qatar Airways flight, which after 11 hours would take me on to new beginnings in a city called Ingolstadt, starting on the 23rd of March 2014 – my “D-Day” in Deutschland.
Partying, packing, some more partying and after half a day of eating airplane food, Munich took my breath away and how.! Expecting the wonderful season of spring, I was greeted with a blast of chilly air, 0 degree Celsius and snowflakes gently falling from the overcast skies of Bayern. Looking at a well dressed gentleman lighting up a cigarette, I was tempted to borrow one to warm myself up, casting that thought away, I got on the bus to Ingolstadt after navigating my way around with a memorized “Sprechen Sie English bitte?” which were the only 3 German words that I knew, courtesy of a friend.
An hour’s ride on the cleanest roads and looking out at the greenest grass that covered any countryside that I’d ever seen, I had arrived in Ingolstadt – a sleepy little town which seemed devoid of any civilization !! It was a week later that I realized that this was a normal Sunday occurrence in German towns. Dragging my suitcases on the cobble stoned pavement, it was time to utter the magical “Sprechen Sie English bitte?” again, and as luck would have it, a Dame with a Shining Audi A4 (still a cause of jealousy for one of my friend – LOL) dropped me off at the ridiculously hard to pronounce Jugendherberge – a youth hostel.
At that point of time, I would have never have imagined that this would be the start of a relationship between me and the youth hostels of Europe. This particular one, an old Romanesque building with walls so thick that even the WiFi couldn’t penetrate, owners so friendly and cheerful would be my humble abode for the following week. That first night in Germany would not be complete without mentioning the other inmates of my room in the hostel, who would go on to become my closest friends and they are Asado, Caipirinha, Taco and Pad Thai ( confidentiality you know :P)
This blog post on my first day in Germany is dedicated to these 4 guys 😀 – Prost !!!