A small part on the left side of Germany bordering on France that can look back on a very varied and troubled history and nowadays gets often overlooked or causes silly jokes as it is so small and the dialect is quite "strong".
As for me there is hardly anything more enjoyable than sitting on a train on my own, looking out of the window while the sun is shining and losing myself in daydreams I was happy and excited when I arrived in Saarbrücken.
It is so damn close to France you hear a lot of French as soon as you leave the train and see many trains going to France. Not everyone might share my enthusiasm but for me that is highly exciting.
France! And that nearby! I have a strange affinty to borders and always want to hop forth and back just because I can. I know that this area of France is not directly known for its touristic value or overwhelming beauty but anyway. If I would live somewhere like it I would buy every single croissant and lump of cheese over there, take the opportunity to see my beloved French singers live on stage, speak perfect French...sorry, I´m digress.
To put it in a nutshell: I´m Francophile
Maybe I should blame my great grandmother (who I never met of course) who was from "Bitche" (yes, get a grip you English speakers...it´s not that funny :-))
Anyway, I arrived, got welcomed by the charming Alice (who I had met before for less than an hour at Frankfurt airport last summer). She showed me around, we walked though the busy high street to the more tranquil area towards the Basilika Sankt Johann. Some more quite charming streets on, past a theatre housed in an old firestation, along the river Saar and with a short look at the touring Stoffmarkt Holland and the fascinating state theatre built in the 1930s (if anyone knows of another theatre that has been build during the Third Reich please let me know as I find that really quite interesting) we finally settled down for a snack and a drink. But not before I had bought the worlds most amazing, huge and cheap Apfelkrapfen und a bread. Am I strange (hmm, why am I asking after all!?) but anywhere new I go I try to buy food as a souvenir for me to take home. I normally buy some local bread or cakes so I have a bit more variation on my plate at home.
It was nice to sit together and to be able to have a proper eye to eye chat. Time was flying so we wandered on to the Schloss Saarbrücken in order to join a guided tour around the castle and the casemates. The two guys in the tourist information proved useless and didn´t have a clue about anything but we found the starting point and together with another couple we started our journey through the ruins and times.
Time was still flying so after a walk towards the station and the exchange of some collected Glossybox etc. goodies (thank you again!) we parted again.
There is only one thing better than sitting on a train with anticipation - it is sitting there knowing that you had a really good day :-)
Sometimes blogging tricks you - only because you blog over different things and seem to have not an awful lot in common you worry how a meeting in the real life will go, maybe even dismiss the idea. In real life you don´t worry about that, many of our friends have at first glance very few in common with yourself I would guess and it still works.
She reads thrillers, I find them boring. She watches series I have never seen. I love to go to operas, she doesn´t. On paper we should not get along. But we do.
So I´m grateful to have met this wonderful person through the blogosphere when otherwise our paths would probably have never crossed and hope that many more meetings all over Germany or London will follow.
Thank you Alice for the lovely day!
PS: Excuse the lack of photos...I´m crap of shooting when I´m busy talking and walking.
PPS: Primark tourism is a word that should definitely make it into the dictionaries. You just wouldn´t believe the pilgrimages that I witnessed. The whole train consisted basically only of Primark customers. The whole town is filled with French people and their Primark prey And not just one bag, no...more likely 5 or 6. Madness...