Saturday, February 27, 2010

No Sleep Til Dortmund

Eight more beers, one more train station sausage, a fried pie, and hours later, we're in Dortmund.

What was supposed to be a near full day in Düsseldorf ended up being one extended evening. Upon arrival at the train station, we stowed our luggage and started exploring the town. All I have to say is that train station lockers are freakin' magical. If not the need for a bed, you wouldn't even need hotels!

Not that we'd see a bed for a while.

"Stamina Ramen" at Na Ni Wa
We started off exploring Düsseldorf's Japantown area. Who knew that Europe's third largest Japanese community (after Paris and London) lives here!? We stopped into Na Ni Wa and had some amazing ramen... Yes, I had the best ramen I've had outside of Japan (or New York City's Ippudo) in Germany. Seriously. Rue Ste-Anne in Paris, your Japanese community has just been given notice!

Wowed (and utterly stuffed) we walked through the center of Düsseldorf, through the ritzy shopping district and into the Altstadt (old city). One of the first things we saw in the cobblestoned, charming part of town was... a Hooters!?

Despite my love for wings, boobs, and pantyhose paired with hotpants, we gave it a pass and beelined it to the first old brewhouse we saw. Brauerei Uerige fit the bill, so we figured we'd run in for an Altbier or two before exploring more of the Altstadt.

Eight beers later (six for me, if you insist on accuracy, two for the Dame) and we found our butts firmly glued to the old wood bench. The fact that they started closing down cued us to move along and head back toward the station, where we'd be meeting up with our friends (and hosts for the night) before moving on to Dortmund.

Of course, things took longer than expected. In waiting for them, I picked up a dodgy train station Bratwurst. When we finally met up, it turned out no one else had eaten dinner, so we went to late night favorite... McDonald's.

Alannah and I weren't hungry, but believe it or not, we were thirsty. So we had a couple of large Cokes – which disappointingly weren't gargantuan American sized liquid diabetes in a cup – and I couldn't resist trying a McVeggie Burger (not too good) and a fried apple pie. Yes, health-conscious friends back home.... McD's still fries their pies in Germany.

Friends united and post-midnight snack complete, we caught the commuter train to Dortmund. Even though it took an hour and a half, it was mindblowing to see that there's 24-hour rail service.

We were in by 3:00 am, in bed by 5:00, and I woke up after six hours, ready to take on the day... And judging by how many times my sleep was interrupted by trips to the toilet, this day will NOT include any train station Bratwurst.

1 comment:

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