Sunday, December 26, 2010

Journey to a Home for Christmas/MERRY CHRISTMAS!!

Ride from Czech Republic to Germany

From Prague, I took a shared ride with two very nice women to Nuremberg where I had to request an emergency couchsurf request to a group on the site.  I was happily welcomed by about five people!  I responded immediately responded to the first person to welcome me into their home on such short notice.  I met up with Peter at a cafe and we went to his place to prepare dinner, because another CSer was going to be joining us from Bolzano, Italy(she was really great, and now i have a connection in Bolzano!)  Peter invited over another friend of his who had a couchsurfer as well, from Spain.  We all had a delicious dinner together, and then to sleep!
Unexpected meal w/couchsurfers

First person on the train!

Train ride to Saarbrucken from Nuremberg

Caught my train the next day to Saarbrucken!  Everything went smoothly, got into Saarbrucken about 5pm, met up w/Gregor, got a tour of his hometown.  And that night him and his friends were having their yearly Christmas dinner.  It was great, I got to meet lots of people he grew up with, we had this Swiss dish, Raclette and all of this took place in the tower of their church!  After dinner, we all moved up to the top of the tower which was pretty much a bar/dance floor and seating around.  Haha, who would've expected this in a church?!
Dinner w/Gregor's friends
The crazy church

Christmas market in Saarbrucken


The next day we headed to a small village nearby where Gregor's parents live now.   It was amazing to be at a real home!  Even if it wasn't my own, I was welcomed as if it were!  Gregor's parents were super friendly, despite the fact that they didn't speak any English, and I no Polish.  Interesting combination, but we've been making due, with Gregor as my translator!
We decorated the tree!
Finally got the chance to relax.   It was amazing.  That night we went to Gregor's grandparents house for Christmas Eve dinner.  I was able to meet them and his brother and his girlfriend.  The meal was incredible.  SO MUCH POLISH FOOD!   Twelve dishes, no less.  Many foods I had never had before, all fish except the meat peirogis. It was all so good, and I made sure to capture every bit of the meal with a picture!  We ate the feast, followed by at least 3 different desserts and then on to the gift giving!  Gregor's family was so incredibly sweet, I even had gifts for me under the tree!  Definitely did not expect it.  That is one thing I have really noticed being in Germany, hospitality and consideration.  Everyone is so giving, during any meal, you always serve everyone else before yourself.  I feel like this is missing in the States, it's become too much about yourself and getting what you need before helping others.
Anyways, dinner was great, the company was amazing, even though I didn't understand more than half the conversation, I still had a great time.
Only the beginning: Peirogis

part of the family

Today: More food.
We eat so much, I'm not sure what I'll look like after this holiday is over, maybe about ten pounds heavier, but ten pounds happier too!  Woke up around noon, to be greeted with a table full of all kinds of stuff!  Breads, meats, sausages/keilbasa, a potato salad-like dish, jellied meat, a pate of some good.  And then to finish it off, chocolate cake with a sour cherry center and coffee, and polish cheesecake.  Oh man.  And now we are waiting for the goose to cook, and at 7 will have another feast...after a nap.
Our Christmas day feast!

the sausages...mmm

The delicious chocolate cake to finish it off!


  1. Cool hosts sure helps to enjoy the festivities! How are you staying with people? Mainly through Couch Surfing? It's pretty time consuming sending out requests. You were lucky to find a place on such short notice (but that's how I do it too :p ).

  2. Haha, yeah, sometimes it is tough. Depending on the place (smaller towns=easier), most places I had planned out a couple weeks ahead. This was my first emergency couch request, but it works!!

  3. Oh, and this was a friend of mine's family. Gregor was a foreign exchange student in high school I got in touch with!