My Munich-tastic time in Germany!
Before I arrived in Munich I had heard great things about the city. I had heard countless tales of its beautiful architecture, about it being a fabulous bustling hub containing every traditional image of Germany you ever had. I heard friends brag about the amazing countryside of Bavaria, the beautiful fairytale-like castles, and breathtaking scenery across mountains and lush green forests galore. And above all, naturally, I had heard about the beer and the sausages! Although I have to say that being neither a massive beer nor sausage fan, it was these most famous of all German things that probably excited me least! 😉
But the truth is, despite all these great things awaiting me in Munich, when I arrived at the airport, all my anticipation, curiosity and excitement was overwhelmed by the butterflies flying around in my stomach! I didn’t speak a word of German and here I was, in the middle of Bavaria, about to plonk myself in the home of a kindly German family and somehow take a bus and find my German language school and find someway to ask for a glass of water, let alone finding something to eat… I found myself thinking “How exactly did I get myself into this?!?”
And then, 4 weeks later, I found myself wondering what I made all the fuss about! Not only was Munich as beautiful, friendly and wonderful as promised, I also managed to get by my first few days in the language… without actually knowing the language, with no problem at all! It was incredible to me that it only took a few days of taking lessons at the school to start to get a handle on the everyday phrases that would get me through.
By the end of the first week I was asking for “more please” at the dinner table and saying “can I have the bill” with pride! Of course, my sign language skills also came on leaps and bounds during that first week. It is amazing how much I was able to communicate by smiling and gesturing like an idiot.
I truly loved my time in Munich. The city was utterly beautiful. Historic cobbled streets everywhere, magnificent churches and museums all peppered with the bustling, youthful atmosphere (not to mention heaps of fab restaurants, bars and cafes), that you find in great university cities. I loved my little daily routines that made me feel like I was part of the city, immersed in the culture and part of an experience that was so much more than just a trip abroad – by the time I left I felt like Munich was ‘my town’!
My daily lunchtime visit to one of the cafes in the beautiful Marienplatz in the heart of the city and just a few minutes from the school, my daily ride on the Munich metro (where I learned that German efficiency really does live up to its fine reputation!), my school excursions with all my lovely classmates, the genuinely friendly locals that I met along the way. Everything came together to make me fall in love with Munich.
Whether you are a complete beginner like I was, or whether you already know your ‘du hast’ from your ‘sie hast’ I wholeheartedly recommend Munich. It was an amazing place for me to start learning German and has only filled me with more enthusiasm for the language… I can’t wait until my next trip!