Trip Taken: 2005
Last week in Stuttgart. The months in Germany seem to have lasted forever but then flew past me like a passing breeze. I was putting on my most festive gear for IAESTE’s Christmas party, which is basically nothing.
I was meeting up with the remaining interns who are left in Vaihingen at the lake. There’s Josef, Steven, Joy, Balazs, and Navid. The lake that was swarming with ducks in the summer and autumn months is completed frozen. The plants around the edge of it have withered. They’re either dead or in a deep hibernation that only plants are privy to the secrets of. We were all pretty much on time and walked the 400 meters to the S-bahn station. I had completely forgotten my santa hat in my room. This really irked me since I was the one who said to wear santa hats at the party. Oh well.
We arrived at the Mitte S-bahn station and headed for the restaurant. Schlossplatz was alive with the spirit of Christmas. Part of Stuttgart’s Christmas was here, so there were many revelers having fun the last few days before Christmas day. We waited for the interns from the Schwabstrasse apartment. I think there was only Pubudu that we were waiting for.
After everyone was gathered, we went to the Calwer Passage. It’s a little alley behind the old stock exchange with little shops and restaurants. It’s also where the restaurant was. Called Calwer-Eck-Bräu, it serves up pretty good Swabian food. Two of the IAESTE officers were there already waiting for us; Roland and my good friend Tobi.
Felix and Hannah met up with us in a little bit. The atmosphere was festive as there were green and red garlands hung against brown wooden booths. I’m going to recall as much about the food as possible but it has been a while. If I had to put one word to the food, then it would be hearty. That is a given since we are in Germany. Spätzle was plentiful, of course, since we were in Swabenland. There was a meat platter with some grilled sausages, pork chops, chicken steaks, and mashed potatoes. We ordered pizza and several orders of an apple dessert that’s similar to a crepe but more strudel like. And lots of booze. Shots of liquor and pitchers of beer.
There was good conversation and libations and sustenance flowed freely. It was a great way to spend the last few days before Christmas Day. A lot of the interns finished their contracts, so it was bitter sweet. My contract was almost up and I was also getting ready to go home. But at that moment in time, I didn’t think too much about it and just enjoyed my life.