Day 1 2013 Europe Trip - Take Off - Our First Out Of USA Trip!

9:50 AM AirplaneFoodCritic 0 Comments

I was doing a last check of our trip plans when I noticed that the bf and I were booked for different flights for our return trip.  Can you believe that? I mean, when a person calls to purchase tickets for two people is it not an assumption that you are expecting the same stinking airplane?! I know, I know, you are never to assume anything. This is something I would think is almost a given but here I am. Living proof that nothing is a given. So it's the evening before we leave and I see that the flight I booked eleven months ago said in plain numbers that he leaves Geneva at 6am and I leave Geneva at 1pm. I called to request that they just switch him to my flight. I didn't want his because I do not want to be up at 3am in France to make that flight. I was relieved when the man said that was doable. Then he told me they will have to charge me a $250 flight change fee. Well that sucks but OK. Then he tells me I will have to pay the difference of the tickets which is another $1100. Eeeeeeeep! I told him I do not have $1500 laying around. Panic set in. I asked him what options were out there. The man put me on hold. In the end I ended up taking the 0-Dark-Hundred flight with the bf's ticket because it only cost me $75. I may have gotten an even better deal were I to have cried a bit more but the panic attack was overriding and I just sounded like I was sitting on a washing machine with an unevenly dispersed load.

All's well that ends well, as they say. We got to the airport for our first flight with no new problems. We made our first purchase with our new joint credit card in the San Francisco International Airport. How exciting, I know!! We kept the receipt. Every night we plan to copy down all our expenditures so we can have an idea of what we are spending. 

Me and the bf at the airport

An airport employee was making her way towards us, passenger by passenger, checking the weights of the luggage. I started hearing tense movie music as she moved nearer my bag. I felt like the TV show Locked Up Abroad. I knew my luggage was going to be too heavy no matter what their limit is. Moment of truth: She weighed mine and it was way over. I was not able to see the scale so I tried to take a couple things out of my bag. See, I hate...HATE...checking my bags. It gets tossed around with no respect, it can be rummaged through, you have to wait ages for it in baggage claim if it shows up at all. I much prefer to have it with me where I know it is safe and sound. Continuing to lighten my bag, I pulled out the massive envelope that contained all my maps and itineraries. It did weigh a lot. I put it in my purse. The lady weighed it again. No luck. I pulled out a jacket and put it on. Nope. I pulled out another jacket...and another. I was wearing most of the clothes in my suitcase at that point yet still the woman was shaking her head at me. The bf was getting annoyed. He wanted me to just check the bag but I was in too deep...too deep inside my own wardrobe to stop. I pulled out the GPS device my travel agent gave me for the car. That did the trick. The lady tsk tsk'd me and made me promise I would not put it back in the bag as soon as I got on the plane. I promised and I kept the promise. We got on the plane with a bit of shuffling, bumping, tangling and dragging on my part but we got on.

I am here on the first flight of the trip.  I do feel fortunate to have gotten these tickets on miles. Well, one ticket,  so we are splitting the cost of the other ticket. Usually you get a pretty junky flight plan but we are going straight from SFO to Munich. Another snafu is that we didn't get seats next to one another. We both got aisle seats. I politely asked the German woman next to me (who has the window seat) if I could interest her in taking the aisle seat. I tried to look feeble with my cane and everything but it did not fly. She actually laughed at me. I knew it was a shot in the dark. The man across the aisle from me obliged though so we have tons of leg room and can talk and hold hands. Can't ask for much more than that. But...now...I think the woman next to me is a bit of a B. We kinda got off on the wrong foot and now I gotta sit next to her for the next eleven or so hours. It is like sitting next to a bitchy block of ice.

Thank you, Lufthansa, for free booze. I have my Campari and soda and my Art vs Science music. I always take off listening to their song "Finally See Our Way".  I would post a video of it for you but that is far beyond my blogging capabilities on a tablet.

Hey, look, I posted it!

My plan here is to stay awake for two hours, get drunk-ish and sleep for four hours, wake up for two more and feel refreshed. I am fully aware I am fooling myself but it sounds like a great idea. So does visiting Mars.
We were across the aisle from one another but it worked out really well, space-wise.

We got through the Munich airport like a dream. The bf had checked his bag and even retrieving it was a breeze. We hopped in the first taxi in the taxi line and 65€ later we were at The Hotel Schlicker in the very center of the Old Town called the Aldtstatt, which translates to...old town. We have a view of the fancy church that houses the Rathaus-Glockenspiel on the Marienplatz. We found out quickly that there is a Bayern Munchen soccer match tonight. Big, roaming masses of young men singing futball songs and drinking beer. It is exciting.
Sticking my head out one of the windows of our hotel room. See how close the Glockenspiel is? It's that grey, spiky building in the center. 

I managed to sleep the whole flight as I had planned, perhaps even better than I planned. I feel fantastic. The bf did not fare as well. He is exhausted. We took an hour and a half nap. The bed felt so comfortable. Our room in the Hotel Schlicker is the best possible. It is on the top floor and it looks out on to a cute street. Right up the street is the Marienplatz and the famous Glockenspiel. It is visible from the bed. Directly across the street is a relatively famous brauhaus called the Weisses Brauhaus.
Weisses Brauhaus as seen from our hotel window. To the left, across the little street is where the futbol match was being watched
Next to that is a more modern bar that is playing a soccer match, free for all who care to stop and watch a bit. It was crowded as heck. Apparently, Bayern Munchen, Munich's soccer team was playing in Europe's biggest tournament against Borussia Dortmund. Turns out....Munich won!! You can only try to imagine how berserk this whole city went. We walked one block to get dinner at the super world-famous Hofbrauhaus.

My beer and I. A story of triumph and heartache...not really just my first beer in Munich!

We walked in and found a seat at a table that had a small German family already sitting there. It is custom (and you have no choice) to share the tables with other patrons. This way you have the opportunity to meet all sorts of interesting people.
Inside the world famous Hofbrau Haus

I ordered a liter of Munich beer. The German family sitting with us toasted me because it was so big! The bf doesn't drink so he got an orange drink. The server rolled his eyes at him haha...jokingly. I happened to have printed out an English version of the menu so we found little difficulty ordering. I wanted Munich sausages but they were out so the server recommended a big sausage platter. It was WAY more sausages than I could possibly eat (see photo below). The bf is a vegetarian so he will always have a little difficulty ordering because if I mess up it doesn't matter but if he misinterprets a menu item he may get fish or meat. He tried to be safe and ordered cheese spread, bread and onion rings. Turns out, in Germany, onion rings are literally rings of raw onions. He was very disappointed but he did love the orange drink.

I left stuffed but he was still hungry. We stopped at a take out pizza place and grabbed him a big slice of pepperoncini and cheese and I got a bottle of delicious beer. We walked back to the hotel and enjoyed our treats. We watched the soccer game and the people across the street. A lot of people out there were quite drunk. We watched a couple of guys try very hard to take down a street sign. Munich won the match and the streets exploded with cheers, people, singing and revelry. We fell asleep but Munich continued to party the whole night. I find the sounds of the city soothing as I sleep but the bf had to use his ear plugs. I heard groups of roaming, singing men all the way up to 7:30am the next day. Luckily we got lots of sleep because tomorrow will be jam packed with things to see and do. We only have one full day in this wonderful city.


My first sausage and sauerkraut with my first beer at the Hofbrauhaus.

A bit out of order but this is my view as we left SF


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