Europe 2015 – Germany

by Diane on 02/09/2015

There can’t be a visit to Europe without us spending a few days in Germany. It’s where we grew up and where our families still live.

Ober-Mörlen/Bad Nauheim

We landed in Frankfurt and as always we stopped with Kai’s parents first. Having breakfast (with Butterhörnchen and Mohnbrötchen) and a shower at their place as soon as we touch German ground has turned into a tradition. Clean and with a full tummy we went out for a coffee and prosecco to Bad Nauheim – greeting the country in style.

Prosecco in Bad Nauheim.

Prosecco in Bad Nauheim.

Hello Inge!

Hello Inge!

Without spending any more time in the area we went from Bad Nauheim straight to Essen.

Family day in Essen

Our day with my dad and my step mum was packed with a lot of fun things! We started off with a nice breakfast at their place.

Kai, Mechthild and my dad in their garden after breakfast.

Kai, Mechthild and my dad in their garden after breakfast.

Then we saw an exhibition on The Appearance of Beauty at the Gasometer Oberhausen (watch this great video of all the artworks).  After a short trip to the Lego Discovery Centre (getting some fancy Lego bricks) and a quick lunch of dutch fries (Pommes Special) we headed back to their place for a relaxing afternoon with the extended family. We also squeezed in a visit to the neighbours, who have been around since my early teenage years (I consider them extended family) and checked out their new beekeeping adventures.

Thanks to Dad’s marriage I got a whole bunch of new family members added to my whānau, including a new step grandma, a step aunt, a step sister and a step brother (plus their partners). Since we rarely see them it’s always fun spending time with them and getting to know them better.

Our growing family.

Our growing family.

Godchild day in Moers

The only person who is guaranteed to see us when I’m in Germany (apart from our parents) is my godchild Marie. We spent an awesome day with her, her sister Lisa and their parents Nina and Joachim at their place in Moers.

We learned about Furby’s new pooping feature (yep, you can sit him on a mobile device and his poop appears in a toilet bowl on the screen), had lunch in the garden, spent some time in the pool, had ice cream and did heaps of other fun things. I wish I could spend time with them more often.

Pool time with Marie.

Pool time with Marie.

Lisa in the kiddies' pool.

Lisa in the kiddies’ pool.

The last day in Essen

On our last day we went shopping. We always send ourselves a parcel with all the goodies we can’t get in New Zealand, mainly cosmetics and snacks (there is no easy way to get hold of gelatine-free winegums in NZ!). This time we managed to get 12.5 kg squeezed into a parcel.

We also met with a friend I hadn’t been in touch with for more than 20 years, and spent the evening over a good-bye dinner with my dad and his wife at Zodiac, where we made plans for their upcoming visit in 2017.

Usually we set aside some time to meet with friends while we’re in Essen. We book a table in a cafe and tell everyone who wants to see us to come. Yay if they do, no hard feelings if they don’t. This time we didn’t do this. We simply didn’t have enough time and it would have been too stressful to squeeze it in. So please accept out apologies if you were disappointed to see that we were in Essen without seeing you. We promise to take heaps of time to show you around Wellington when you come to visit us in New Zealand.

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