Apr 14, 2013

C H R I S T M A S & N E W Y E A R

After four months of not so hard study in England, post a few close friend good-byes, it was time for Christmas. Four months of being overseas, and I had not had a flicker of homesickness. Partly due to the amount of amazing friends I had made, but also because we were always keeping busy. Eventually, it did come. Christmas time was the first time that I was upset about being away from my family and friends. The weather was another thing that didn't help my mood. Although there was a possibility of a white Christmas, I was wanting sunshine more than ever. I didn't expect my body to feel strange about being in cold weather when it was supposed to be warm, but boy did it. Things were made even worse when friends began posting copious amounts of updates about Falls Festival, but I kept reminding myself - You're in Germany, snap out of it! Thankfully, once New Year came around, I was back to my old self.

Let me begin by saying I am absolutely in love with Germany. Maybe because I left Europe with so many close German friends which tainted my view, but the place is so beautiful and the people are so great! I stayed with my German flat mate Jackie and her family over the Christmas break which I will be forever grateful for. Her family were so generous and lovely natured, and her Dad spoke amazing english which made my life 10x easier! They also had two ridiculously cute pups who I didn't want to stop playing with...

While I was staying with the Peukerts in a typical German town called Ingolstadt, I went to the Christkindlmarkt (Christmas market) in Ingolstadt, traveled to Munich and Nuremberg where we also went to the Christmas markets, ALMOST had a white Christmas, experienced German Christmas - which is celebrated on our Christmas eve with dinner, presents and family time, went to the sombre Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial, Bavarian alps, Linderhof Palace and Neuschwanstein Castle (the real Disney castle!!!) and met a bunch of awesome Australians which momentarily eased my homesickness. 

New Year was spent in London, as well as the first few days of the new year before heading home to Sunderland. New Years in London was a night I will never forget, well - the parts I can remember at least. Plans for New Year included dinner at an Italian restaurant on The Strand followed by a walk through the crowds to try and get a good view of the fireworks over the river Thames, oh yeah, and A LOT of drinking. The crew and I began drinking on New Years at about 5pm, three hours before dinner at 8pm... let's just say that when we got to dinner we were feeling merry. Dinner was amazing, good food and company for a couple of hours before heading toward the Thames and finding a spot at Trafalgar square and a perfect view of Big Ben. Obviously, because we thought the fireworks were over Big Ben, we fought through the crowds to get the perfect spot although it ended up to be not-so-perfect. The fireworks at midnight ended up being to the right of Big Ben (our left), and OF COURSE there was a equivocally large building directly in our view. So, New Years consisted of listening to the fireworks and watching them on the big screen behind us. Maybe not the most clever idea but we were so drunk by this point we still were having the best time. The next couple of days consisted of some more London sight seeing as well as maxin' and relaxin'. All in all an amazing Christmas and New Year!!!


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