Now taking off to Germany!
May has been a month of new adventures. I have been so lucky and blessed to be able to travel to three new destinations this month.
I showed up to my check-in and realized I was no longer the baby of the crew. There were four people below me so that meant I was able to actually pick my position on the plane. That’s a first! Things are starting to look up with being a young reserve…
We take off to Germany and the flow of service was so smooth because our crew was very cohesive. Not once was there any conflicts or side eye rolls from crew members. Everyone understood their role and we worked hard as a team. Sometimes you get a crew and want to hide in the corner hoping a senior mama will not correct you on everything you do. My favorite people to work with are the ones who do not take things too serious and try to have fun by working together. We had an excellent group of women power in the back, plus one male diva.
We arrived in Germany around 7:30 am the next morning, took a quick nap, and then were off to explore Munich around 2 pm. The hardest part for me when arriving into an international layover is quieting my mind to sleep knowing I get to go explore a new city for the first time. For me, it is almost like being a kid waking up on Christmas.
We lucked out with beautiful weather of a vibrant sunny and 80 degrees. We took two stops on the subway arriving into Marienplatz. For those who may not know, Marienplatz is central city square located in the center of Munich. The subway system was very clean (compared to NYC subways) and was very easy to navigate. It was our lucky day because FC Bayern Men’s Soccer Team was at Marienplatz to celebrate their German Cup first place win. I loved the chanting and waving of their symbolic red flags. Catchy music was blaring, and people waited for hours in the heat to see their favorite team.
My friend Toj and I went to get some water, then we decided to leave the crew for a little to go explore the beautiful streets of Munich. We came back to Marienplatz and our crew was definitely gone as we searched for them. With that being said, it was up to Toj to try and get in contact with the others since I do not have international texting. Of course we found them at a beer garden.
I have never been to a beer garden so it was really cool to see how they dine in the middle of a park, or in the city with a garden surrounding the restaurant. Women served in their traditional dirndl and men wore lederhosen, which are knee-length trousers or short pants made from leather, linen, and wool. This traditional wear is mostly worn in Bavaria, Austria, and South Tyrol.
Three beer gardens to definitely check out in Munich are: Augustiner Keller, Mini Hofbräuhaus, and Auf Weidersehen.
Being that I am not a beer drinker, I tried to play it cool by ordering a popular beer with the recommendation of our German speaker. It was a light beer with Sprite mixed in. It was not that bad! Compliments of our German speaker for all the suggestions and showing us her city.
Tip: If you order water from a restaurant and the server asks if you want gas in your water, do not give him a funny look. It is very common for Germans to drink sparkling water without any ice in their beverages. Just say “no gas”.
We explored the city and of course satisfied our quench for dessert by stopping at a bakery. More chocolate filled croissants and bread filled our bellies. Then, we went back to relax in our hotel for a little until it was off to explore another beer garden located in Englischer Garten. This park was absolutely gorgeous. It reminded me a lot of NYC Central Park. I also realized we were walking around at 9:00 pm in daylight!
One thing I noticed about Munich is there were no telephone cables around the city or near homes. Their electricity runs from underground. Such a shame that they have no place to throw their shoes over the cables to represent whatever they are representing as they do here in America.
Unfortunately we arrived on a Sunday, which meant a lot of stores were closed. I am starting to notice Europe does not have normal operational hours as they do in America. I mean, it was a good thing stores were closed because I did not need to shop anyways. I am such a sucker for foreign clothing, accessories, and food. 😋
Because I was with such a fun crew, I REALLY lacked sleep the entire four day trip. Obviously our sleep patterns were already thrown off with a 6+ hour time difference, so it was not good we decided to stay up all hours of the night ordering room service, and conversing about random things that could have definitely waited for our 11 hours back to Houston.
Oh, did I mention when we touched down in Munich, our crew scheduling alerted us our entire trip had changed and we were now flying from Munich to Houston? They done cut our MUN layover by two hours!! Now we would be laying over in IAH for 22 hours, which was not too bad since they put us downtown; And it was extra pay (: So I guess it all worked out, but shooweee it was my longest working flight with a total of over 11 hours. Thankfully, we finished our service with enough time to get a two hour nap break.
Once we arrived in Houston, we decided to all go get dinner at this amazing tapas bar called Batanga.
If you are ever in the downtown Houston area, I suggest you go to this restaurant and order the fish tacos and yucca fries. We all ordered something different, so you cannot go wrong with anything on the menu. This restaurant is indoor with an outdoor patio and all types of Spanish music (no Spanish food on the menu though). Great food with an even better ambiance.
My crew and I left Houston going our separate ways. But, I can wholeheartedly say I enjoyed every minute of that trip, even with the lack of sleep and pounding headache because I was starving at 2 am.
But back to Germany, I was stunned by Munich’s beauty. I had visited Frankfurt, which was a little bit more industrial and modern. Frankfurt is supposedly not as “Germany” as some have expressed. So, I did not know what to expect from Munich. Munich was so green; It sort of reminded me of Indiana minus the allergies. Its rich cultural heritage drew me right in from the moment we stepped onto the cobblestone streets of Marienplatz.
The crew, passengers, and the city of Munich went beyond my expectations and I hope to visit Munich again one day! Once again, crew scheduling wins me over with my drive for my love of international trips, wanderlust and new adventures!