In just less than a year, i find myself in an old plane taking my third flight to Europe. We paid extra to choose our seats but what luck we had that Big Guy’s chair was broken. When the seatbelt lights went off, i lowered my seat like the rest and heard a loud moan in thick Australian accent.
“I’M TELLING YOU, THIS ALWAYS HAPPENS TO ME!” The yapping went on. “WHY DON’T YOU GO TO BUSINESS CLASS?”
Simultaneously, i was just telling Big Guy, “Why didn’t she buy a business class ticket?” and Big was thinking to tell her the same.
We turned around and saw a lady probably in her 50′s looking like she was punished to run in circles for 3 weeks in the forest. Even her ponytail couldn’t contain the frizziness of her blonde mane. Wisps of brittle hair framed her worn face and i stared at her – blankly; amazed by the amount of courtesy she has more than anything else. “Ignore her, sayang“, said Big Guy brushing it off.
After our meal was served and finished, i lowered my chair to shuffle in comfortably. Then,
“EXCUSE ME, I HAVEN’T FINISHED MY MEAL.”
This time, i talked back in caps lock (too). Hath no fury like a woman scorned . . .
“WHAT’S YOUR PROBLEM?”, and somehow managed to squeeze in a sharp glare into her surprisingly, fearful eyes.
That shut her up the entire flight. And she apologized for blocking my way along the aisle to the water closet. What have i learned from this story? 1. Not all who travel are wise. 2. If someone steps on your head, you need to let them know that you’ve got legs too. And these legs are meant for kickin’ bad butts.
* * *
After half a day playing origami with my body in my pursuing attempts to sleep properly, i was finally in Germany again. i walked about the airport’s car park while waiting for Big Guy to get our rental car; feeling like a mixed up toy box, except that this box is filled with knotted muscles and tangled organs; all rattling in the bitter chill of dawn.
i walked to the left side of our VW, opened the door and “EH!”, caps lock style. i looked at Big Guy and noticed he was already looking at me. We both started cracking out loud before exchanging sides. (p.s. This is my favorite part of the entire story.)
“We are in Europe, sayang!” he said. Of course we are.
The avid thought of reaching Big Guy’s hometown to officially begin our ritual made the drive from Frankfurt less fun that it was the first time we did so. As no same story told twice are ever exactly the same, i’m sharing with you what i meant when i said ‘our ritual’, this time done even better than before. Here i managed to narrow down the Top 5 highlights to eat and enjoy in Esslingen the way we love it.
We had been in the car for two solid hours but Esslingen was still no where to be seen. We knew our way, but that was no consolation after much moving around without stops from air to land, across the globe and now the frosty German state. Big Guy pulled over at a gas station and got me a Pfefferknacker.
“But i don’t want it.”
The next minute i find myself with it anyway, and an instant hot chocolate by my side. Halfway through what i’d call ‘a fake meal’, i smiled as i realized our own sweet ritual had just greeted us. This is how Big Guy takes care of me. It starts with a Pfefferknacker.
Pfefferknacker is a friendship between dried sausage and bun as seen above; which you can get at just any bakery shops or gas stations in Germany.
You’d probably visit Berlin or Munich but if you do go to Esslingen, please, please eat this meat loaf for me:
We call it Meatlove with a capital M. There are two flavors – this is Caramelized Onion and the other i named it Pepper Power. This butcher shop is located at Karstadt mall in central Esslingen, beside the entrance next to H&M.
i reckon the Germans only eat this sandwiched between a fresh bun but since i’ve got a figure to maintain, i’d rather to be looked at wide-eyed as ‘the Asian with her naked Meatloaf’. It’s like eating nasi lemak with only the sambal and no nasi.
A FREE treat: Don’t forget to breath in big gulps of fresh air. Think of it as ice cream for your lungs. Yummy!
After a meal (or two), practice the Italian secret to a good life. Grab an espresso at Bar Piccolino, Big Guy’s favorite hangout spot. Comes with a piece of chocolate (surprise flavor every time) and a shot glass of sparkling water.
A ritual is only considered a ritual if it has been done a few times. Since this is the first time i am discovering this lovely coffee shop, i will not be numbering it (yet).
At Lavazza, Esslingen, for tea.
The exact view i saw when i dodged my head up.
Or when Big Guy looked front.
Pajama Pretty complete outfit post here.
Snap a picture of this fairytale church. (We already have a couple of it by now.)
Coffee, tea, or . . . Prosecco! Another new bar we tried out; which i would declare as my personal favorite, Accanto.
A stylish place any stylish person would love – - – you can trust me on that.
To ease the digestion process after all that eating and drinking, Big Guy and i would take a complete walking tour around the quaint little town arm in arm, because a clumsy me keeps tripping but it’s okay because there will be a big strong hand that will always catch me. This time, i spot my initials in black and gold. Can you see it too?
It’s always a wonder to me how each time i visit Esslingen, it looks newer rather than older, with fresher ideas and inspirations.
If you have been a city person all your life, this town will remind you to slow down and enjoy the little things surrounding you – like these cob webs amongst happy, vibrant flowers.
Personally, i think it’d be silly not to grab this chance to buy the fruits you can rarely find / are super expensive in Malaysia. This time around, i picked the theme Berry Craze! and got Big Guy to buy a box each of the berries below:
Can you make a wild guess if they are sweet or sour?