The next stop in my search for cultural diversity was none other than Germany, Munich to be exact. If perfect could be used to describe a city I would use it to describe Munich in all honesty. For starters upon arrival the people at the airport were super helpful in helping me get to the metro and in directing me on how to get to my hostel. Oh yeah that's the other thing that made my stay in Munich so different from the rest. I ended up staying at a hostel because it was the cheapest option and boy was it the best decision I made during the entire trip. To be completely honest I thought Germany was going to be the lamest stop on my trip because the city of Munich didn't have that much to offer (other than Oktoberfest and I had missed that by a couple days) and I was staying in a room with 5 other dudes, so I didn't really set an expectation for the city.
My first day in Germany I met up with a friend after I dropped my stuff off at the hostel and she showed me around the town and damn was it beautiful. The architecture of the city was nothing short of amazing, the town center was packed with all these attractive young people. It was at that point I found myself falling in love with the city of Munich. During my first night in Germany my friend took me to out to this Bavarian restaurant where I had my first taste of heaven and had a ton of German beer. To be quite honest, everyone in the restaurant seemed rather nice to each other. It’s not so uncommon for a random stranger to buy you cigarettes, sing German songs with you or even just strike up a conversation with you out of the blue. It was only my first day there and I had already felt so welcome and loved by the city and its locals.
I’d have to say the thing that stood out to me the most in Germany and made me experience a weird combination of feelings was visiting a concentration camp. As someone who appreciates history I’ve always wanted to visit one and I gotta say it was an experience like never before. The first thing you see on your way into the camp is these German words that translate to “Work makes freedom” in huge letters on the gate. It’s weird knowing that you’re standing in a place that was designed and used for killing people. Seeing a room that was made for burning humans and standing in a gas chamber is weird feeling. Such a large space used to commit one of the world's worst atrocities, to know that there were many more places like this all around Europe is a surreal feeling. Upon leaving Dachau camp I wondered why sites like these are still around, after some thinking I came to realize even though it was used to commit horrible crimes against humanity. It is also a huge grave site for the fallen and at the same time I guess it stood there as a reminder as to how cruel humans really can be in hopes that a tragedy like that would never happen again.
To sum up my stay in Germany I’d have to say it was pretty darn close to perfect. During the day time my friend would take me to visit all the historical sites and popular places and during the night my Hostel mate (a random stranger that I had just met) would take me to the best bars where we’d have an amazing time drinking good beer and walking the streets. He even took me to the red light district, which even though was sketchy was a pretty damn cool experience. One thing that really stuck out to me was how flawlessly the metro there worked, it was surprisingly on time all the time (even on those late nights out) unlike the MTA which we all know and despise so much. It just really struck a note with me on how perfect the city of Munich really was (in my eyes at least), it was all the little things that made it seem so perfect, like the food, the way the locals interacted with me and their way of life. It honestly reminded me of a NYC 2.0.