Christmas just isn’t Christmas without seeing a German Christmas market.
Just when I thought that this year would go Weihnachtsmarkt-free, here I was barely awake on a Saturday morning when my partner sprung up the idea of going to Aachen in Germany. The first time I discovered Aachen was almost five years ago, winter of early 2011, around the same time we had our first car ever – a rundown 16-year old Opel Astra if I remember correctly. It was a gift to my partner from his father and it served its purpose for the three-hour trip and back (though it would only be 9 months later when it had to go to that big garage in the sky). Aachen back then was a revelation, a small city with a lot of unbelievable history and character. It was one of the first of many times I went to Germany that gave me more of an education than I could have ever learned anywhere else. Back then I was hard-pressed for work, struggling as ever to find my place in Europe and almost giving up entirely. Contrast this with seven years of living in Holland, a lot wiser and secure enough in the job front that taking time to enjoy the yuletide season is now a far more enjoyable, not to mention wistfully affordable, experience. My inner child was having the time of his life.