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I felt humbled as everyone I met was eager to speak to the Englishman, almost like a competition had broken out over the best English speaker. A more than welcoming start, it was easy enough to settle in, everyone knew I spoke English, nothing else, so they spoke in English to.

Frankfurt was covered in white, with snow up to my knees. The festivity hit me immediately, like getting a whiff of slow roasting turkey for the first time on Christmas day. I was in a town that resembled Birmingham’s Christmas markets, surrounded by plain looking houses, with a splash of colour over each.

I overheard a lady in front talking to her husband on the coach. “The next stop is Trier” she argued as her husband insisted it wasn’t.

“We’re not even close, I’m sure we have at least an hour to go.” I prayed the lady was right, as I sank further and sleepier into the chair.

I soon arrived, Isabelle, a German girl I’d met on an earlier excursion to Greece awaited my arrival with a giant grin: “Hallo.” 

We got in the car and headed to her home where I met her mum, dad and sister, eating bread, sausage and cheese. They expected me to be hungry, so I stuffed my face as much as possible despite failing to withdraw my temptation to grab a Burger King earlier that day.

There was little time to waste as the new-year was in sight, we had no alcohol and I needed to shower badly. After our brief discussion about Trier and how it’s the oldest city in Germany I got changed and we headed out.

We arrived at a friend of Isabelle’s and my first experience of the New Year in Germany began. We sat down at a table of ten people and served small grills, chicken, bacon, ham, potatoes, pasta and a shed load of vegetables, not to mention the main ingredient, something Isabelle mentioned numerous times - the raclette; grilled cheese, everyy Americans dream and mine too, it was amazing.

After we danced our pants off to German techno a French girl insisted that I went outside, I was unsure why, as the numerous Bitburger beers had affected my ability to pay attention.

“We need to go outside and see the fireworks, its New Year in five minutes.” 

I grabbed my coat and dashed outside with my German buddies and stared into the sky. Fireworks began shooting off in different directions two feet away from me.

“Frohes neues jahr” shouted one of the guys, as he hugged me, “Frohes neues jahr?” I repeated, as he replied, “Happy new year.”


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New Year in Trier
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