September 28th
2009
written by Alonna

Yes, we’re still here! Although we’ve been quiet for the last week, Ben and I have enjoyed spending time with friends and family in Germany.

We spent 5 nights with our friend Dave from Boise, who moved to Germany a year ago with his family.  They live in a cute small town in the country 20 minutes outside of Munich, called Pfaffenhofen.  It was so nice to stay in their home and they were such great hosts!  We stayed in their guest room, hung out with Dave, Kristin and their two cute kids, and Dave cooked great meals every night.

Dave's house in Pfaffenhofen [SinglePic not found]


Munich

We spent a day in Munich walking through the town and sightseeing.  It’s a big city and was heavily bombed in WWII, but they’ve restored a lot of the old buildings.

Neogothic Munich View from St Peters Church tower View from St Peters Church tower View from St Peters Church tower

We also enjoyed visiting a huge park called Englischer Garten. There’s a really cool spot where there’s a permanent wave in a canal, and surfers continuously hop out onto it, surf back and forth a few times, and then fall into the water and swim to shore. It’s really fun to watch. After that we found a nice bench near a waterfall and read books for a couple hours. Ahh, this is the life!

Surfers at Englischer Garten Englischer Garten - watch out for the nude sunbathers!


Dachau

Another day we visited the Dachau concentration camp. This was one of the first camps that the Nazi’s created and and the longest in use – from 1933 to 1945. It was initially a prison for political prisoners, but later was used for all the groups the Nazi’s didn’t like (Roma, Jews, homosexuals, etc). It wasn’t an extermination camp (like Auschwitz in Poland), but over 25,000 people died from disease, starvation, beatings, execution and suicide. It was quite an experience to visit the site.  The theme at the Dachau memorial is “Never Again”.

Dachau Concentration Camp Work Will Set You Free


Oktoberfest

On a lighter note… Ben and I happened to be in Munich during the annual beer festival, Oktoberfest. It’s a huge carnival complete with roller coasters and cotton candy, but the main attraction is the beer.  Here’s how it works: you choose one of the many beer tents, squeeze into a spot on a long picnic table with Germans and other visitors, and wait for the beer maid to bring you a huge 1-liter stein of beer. At least half of the people are dressed in traditional German outfits (I loved the dresses and wished I had one!). A band plays occasionally, and apparently later in the day things get pretty crazy. We went in the morning with Dave and Eric (another friend of Dave’s from Boise), so it was a relatively mild experience, but good enough for us. Ben and I shared two beers, ribs and apple strudel. It was great!

Oktoberfest - our tent! Lots of people drinking beer Prost! munich_17 Oktoberfest Traditional Clothing


Today we left Berlin and just arrived in Prague… more on those later.

4 Comments

  1. Clay
    09/29/2009

    Germany sounds interesting too! I like the way you tell the story along with the pictures! -Clay

  2. Jonathan S.
    10/02/2009

    The beer makes you guys look hobbit size…and the Munich wave looks amazing, I’ve never seen anything like it.

  3. Becky
    10/04/2009

    Is that you surfing?

  4. 10/05/2009

    Ha ha ha… no, not me surfing. I’ve never tried surfing but I’d really like to. Maybe in Australia (although I’d be really scared of the sharks). Anyway, I don’t think you could learn to surf on this little wave. We should post a video of it – some of them even jump out onto their board from the side, pretty crazy.