10:29 (local time)
With my alarm screaming at me at half four, I was fully prepared for the day of travel ahead. Now, 400 miles away from home sat at Frankfurt-Hahn airport, the exhaustion of only four hours sleep still hasn’t really sunk in and I’m way too excited for the bus to arrive to take us into the city. Okay, let’s get real, you can never be too excited to go exploring in a new place, in my opinion at least, but now that I’m sat here, just waiting for that bloody bus, my anticipation is rapidly building.
It wasn’t so joyous this morning. We weren’t too late in leaving, at 5:20 ish, and everything was going pretty smoothly. As far as I’m aware, I had everything packed and sorted, and I had a smoothie all prepared to fuel me through the earlier hours of the morning (it was banana and strawberry). The drive down to London Stansted was fine – after all, who in their right mind would be out for a drive at half five on a Sunday? When we got nearer the airport there was a bit of traffic (and this was about the point that my mother began stressing) but it wasn’t too bad – we got parked pretty easily once we were passed it. We’d checked in online so there was no reason to go to the check in desk, and then we hit security. From this point onwards, this was honestly the worst airport experience that I can recall. We had to wait about ten minutes in the queue, and this wasn’t too bad, it would’ve been fine. It put my things in the tray, liquids neatly prepared in a clear plastic bag, and then I walked through the machine. It beeped. Of course, this wasn’t the first time I’d experienced it – I’m fairly certain airports do random spot checks, which makes sense to me. Only rather than giving me the usually quick search, they managed to faff about a ridiculous amount, so much so that I was becoming irritable. But it was fine, I got through eventually, and reunited with mum on the other side. She’d already collected my bag for me and I was expecting to just get going towards the gate, but no. Of course, the machine doing her bags had broken, and we had to wait a further ten minutes for them. Oh, and let’s not forget that her handbag was taken to be searched *eye roll*. By the time we were finished with that, we had about two minutes to reach the gate. Yes, I know, we should’ve left earlier, but never in our lives have we had such an issue, making us rapidly dodge through people in the duty free and shops and then sprinting towards our gate. We reached it in the end, but the stress was not fun.
The length of the plane journey to Germany always shocks me, even after being on my fifth trip to the wonderful country. Being used to long-haul flights means it shocks me a little when after not even having finished listening to one album – oh, we’re here. I did get a pretty cool time lapse of take off though.
Frankfurt-Hahn is a really cute little airport. It’s practically in the middle of nowhere, and there’s barely any shops (so the only food I’ve had is a sandwich that I’d brought with me and intended for lunch). Only issue now is the two-hour coach trip into the city, but I don’t really mind that. I can listen to more BTS.
Whew. I am pooped. We did so much walking today, my mum’s fitbit must’ve been having a freakout.
The bus journey was a little shorter than we were initially expecting, which was nice. The exhaustion properly hit me during this time, and I swear I didn’t even doze properly, but shutting my eyes for a few minutes seemed to give me bounds of energy. I felt like skipping barefoot through meadows full of flowers. Of course, I do that anyway, but that’s hardly the point.
My first impression upon reaching Frankfurt, about one o’clock this afternoon, was that it seemed like a pretty nice city. It was neat, there were enough trees for the conceete not to be totally taking over, and the sun was shining, which is always nice. We strolled through the Hauptbahnhof on our way to our hotel, and it was so enjoyable to see a place bursting with life – it was simple, but businesses serving amazing smelling foods were colourful, and the people I saw were vibrant, even if they were stressing over what train they needed to be getting on.
We dumped our bags at the hotel and got straight out. We headed down to the Main river (accidentally taking a pretty dodgy route through town), which was nice to wander along. I saw a group of people sitting around a watermelon. I was envious:
The old part of the city is where we went first, Römerberg, which was really pretty. We searched a while for a restaurant (we were starving, we hadn’t eaten since this morning) and eventually found a restaurant where I could have a vegan meal (it was spaghetti with a tomato sauce, like usual).
We visited the Goethe Museum next. We only got slightly lost on the way, thanks to a disorienting map app that helped us to completely lose our bearings in the middle of a foreign city (thanks, map app). It’s a lovely old house that was owned by the Goethe family in the 18th century, and has a small gallery of period paintings. We only got there about an hour before closing, but that was long enough when our feet were beginning to hurt.
Then came the nightmare. This demon map app has some of Frankfurt’s attractions listed, the one in question being Main Tower. I thought it sounded pretty cool and was looking forward to the view from the top, but, obviously, that didn’t happen, because not only did we become a teensy bit lost, the map app had placed the building in the weong location. Alas, at least we had an extra hour and a half of walking to burn off all of the food we hadn’t eaten today.
So we returned to our hotel. Mum konked out pretty much straight away, but I settled down to some light reading. Or, I’d hoped it would be light, but reading Brandon Sanderson tends to be a bit heavy. And enjoyable. Reading The Hero of Ages wiped away any remaining trace of tiredness, so now I’m, like, buzzing, but alas, I should got to sleep.
More adventures to share tomorrow? I think so.