There’s nothing quite like Europe at Christmastime, I’ve decided. After 3.5 years spent mostly in Asia and Africa, with no snowy winters or walkable cities, I was craving European charm. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been excited about the exotic and obscure places we’ve been over the past few years, but the power of perspective is compelling. While in Vienna and Munich, I often stopped and thought about the luxury of just being here. Even the smell of the subway made me nostalgic!
After arriving in Munich from South Africa, we schlepped our six bags onto a train to Vienna to see some good friends. These friends always opened their home to me in Delhi, and I shared countless dinners with them after work. We also give them significant credit for helping bring Bill and me together. The moment we arrived at their Vienna home it felt like we were back with family again.
Despite the snow and rain, Bill and I tromped around Vienna for the full day we had there. Christmas markets with sausages and gluhwein, art museums, old palaces… delightful.
After saying farewell to our friends, we rode the train back to Munich and had one night to soak up the Christmas market before heading back home to the States. We stepped out of the subway in Marienplatz and were greeted by a chorus of Christmas carols and a grand lighted tree in front of the ancient courthouse. Little stalls filled with food and Christmas trinkets puddled around the tree. At the end of the evening, we paused at the top of the subway stairs and took a final gaze of the market. Neither of us wanted to leave. We vowed to take our future kids back some day and then ducked into the subway to start the journey back home.