In December I abandoned my daughter and fearful husband for a required 6-day European adventure for work. I arrived in Frankfurt on a Thursday and then went to Berlin, Munich, and London, staying in my new client’s five-star hotels. I had some interesting experiences along the way.
|Xmas Market in Frankfurt|
I was so excited to explore Germany’s Christmas markets! After walking around the market in Frankfurt with my gluvine (hot spiced wine), I was approached by three school girls who asked me if I was American. Do I stand out THAT much? I thought to myself. For a school project, they asked me why I came to Frankfurt and if I liked it. After answering the questions, they thanked me and walked away. I realized I wanted a photo with them, so I yelled to come back and we took a photo.
On Friday I arrived in Berlin. My hotel tour allowed me to see the aftermath of a celebrity’s stay in a specialty suite. I can’t say who, but let’s just say this person likes staying in shape (there was a treadmill in the room by request), drinking beer, and partying!
By day three, I was exhausted and had arrived in Munich Saturday evening. My Vietnamese taxi driver (I had to ask) from the airport knew a lot of stats about the city, such as there being about 6,000 Vietnamese in Munich and that 87% of cabs now accepted credit cards (he was the 13%). That evening I ate my fave German street food Currywurst at a Christmas market and bought Ella’s first booties (handmade).
|Heated recliners at spa in Munich|
To take a break from my multi-city jaunt, I explored the hotel’s spa and pool on Sunday. I opened up the door to the sauna/steam room area and saw a naked man taking a shower! Shocked, I quickly turned around. Then I saw a couple go in together and realized it was unisex, so I entered. It was my first time being in a nude (optional) spa and it was not relaxing, so I left after about 10 min. . . at least the heated recliners were comfortable!
And then there was London–for those of you who have read my book, you know that I have had good experiences here. This time around I had a charming, talkative waiter at Balans Cafe who received a Xmas gift to visit NYC with his mum and a talkative cabbie who shared his wife has a fear of flying so they don’t travel much.
By Tuesday, I was roaming Heathrow Airport in London. While walking down a long hallway to the bathroom I heard, “Miss! Miss!” I didn’t think the man was calling for me but when it continued, I finally turned around, wondering if I had dropped something.
“Where is Gate 1b?” the tall middle-aged man asked me. I gave him a funny look, and replied, “Make a right and keep straight. You’ll see it on your left.” Out of all the people he could have asked, why on earth did he chase me down while I am going to the loo?
While returning home in NJ, I asked my car service driver (who I had a second time in a row) if there was something about me that would make strangers talk to me. He responded, “You have a nice, friendly smile!”
So. . . I guess I’ll have to keep smilin’ to keep my blog going! It’s a good plan for 2014. Happy New Year, everyone!