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Germany, Das Auto!

Written on: Friday July 27th, 2012

A journal entry from: Whiskey, planes and automobiles!

I'm currently at the Paris airport waiting to fly to Florence for the last leg of what's been an awesome trip to date.  

I arrived in Germany only 5 days ago but it feels like its been much longer. Upon my arrival I was picked up by Tobias and Kim, we met up with Iris (Tobias gf) and Susn and explored the city centre for a while. Although Frankfurt was mostly destroyed in WWII, it is quite nice with some modern sky scrapers and the river running through the heart of the city. 

That evening we were joined by Sven and the 6 of us went out for a nice traditional German meal *see pictures. Followed by a visit to an outdoor bar and finishing the night just hanging out at Tobias & Iris's flat! Beautiful place!

The following morning Kim, Sven and I headed out to meet Felix (who visited in Canada last year) in Heidelberg to make our way to the German GP *formula one race!!! This is probably the part of the trip I was most looking forward to and it did not disappoint!! On top of that the three guys bought my ticket and refused to let me pay them back, madness in my opinion but very thankful to them!

This was my third time to an f1 race (Canada 2006, Melbourne 2007), but to be at the Hockenheim Ring with 100,000+ German fans and to see Sebastian Vettel racing at home and the support for him was amazing, not to forget to mention the thousands of hardcore Schumacher fans. The sound of an f1 car is my favorite in life! It is SO loud you can feel it in your body, especially in your chest and your clothes vibrate! If you don't wear your earplugs you feel like your ears are about to bleed, it is just insane! Tv does not do it justice. It is a crazy feeling that leaves you with chills and in my case a massive grin from ear to ear!!! I felt like a giddy child the whole time!  :) :) :)

After the race we headed to Sven's place in Stuttgart, home for the next 3 nights. We had some great BBQs each night and the weather was quite perfect. Unfortunately Sven had to work during the day but Kim and I explored the town a little, went to the Porsche museum and I had lunch with a couple of colleagues I had met at nipissing university a couple of years back. The Porsche museum was quite cool, with so many models from over the years. Stuttgart is a very rich city due to the automotive industry. It is the home to both Porsche and Mercedes and where most are made. 

Keeping on the topic of cars, Sven took me out onto the autobahn one evening for a truly German experience with his flat mates Audi... All I will say is, WOW!!  It's crazy to think that there is really no speed limit! 

After this I took a train to Kroffelbach which is about 400km north of Stuttgart and an hour north of Frankfurt to visit Gabi, Julia, Maurice & Lukas, some distant relatives of my opa's. Although 400km, it only took 2.5h including 3 transfers!

I have previously visited the area back in 2010. Although I didn't have much time to visit we still did manage to have a great short visit. Including some really good traditional food, exploring the local town and a nice walk through the farm fields and forest. It feels kind of like home going to Gabi's and cool to visit where my sisters and cousins have been before! I was also quite lucky to get a ride to the airport this morning! ;o

All in all I have to say I really like it here in Germany and find myself relating to a lot of their culture and ways of life. The highlights would certainly be to have had the opportunity to catch up with such great people and of course the formula one race! It was also nice to not be so go, go, go all the time as well!

The next few days will now be filled with Italian sight seeing! *i am currently somewhere over northern Italy. 

Ciao and all the best!

David W.