Friday, September 15, 2017

What does Munich look like? | The Fulbright Year Begins

I love cities. 

When I observed this to my mom last week, she laughed and said, "Ever since you have been aware of cities you have loved them - you're always talking about how much you enjoy their energy."

That said, I like small towns and countryside, too. 

So I was ecstatic when I found out that I was placed in Munich (the village of a million people, as locals like to refer to it) for my year as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant. 

Munich has it all: the interest and excitement of a metropolis, plus relaxed corners with lots of green space, plus easy access to the Alps. What a place to get to spend 10 months. 

I've been here just over a week and I have wandered so much, and there is still so much more of the city to see. I'm grateful that my mentor teacher gave me this week to get settled and explore before starting work on Monday. 

There are so many directions this post could go - it's been a crazy full week. I could tell you all about the church that I visited on Sunday - possibly the most welcoming church I've ever stepped into. I could gush about the many tea and bookshops that I have already stumbled across - to my great delight. I could share about the mood swings that come with being actually on my own for the first time ever. Or I could give you a glimpse into the German immigration office, which has its own snack guy who goes around selling coffee, croissants, and pretzels. 

But there will be time for me to share some of those stories and to testify to the dozens of ways - big and small - that the Lord has shown His faithfulness this week. If I tried to cram it all into one post, it would be ridiculously long and probably never actually get posted, because there is just so much. 

So what's focusing the post for today is a question one of my cousins asked my mom: "What does Munich look like?"

It's a good question - every city has a different look, a different flavor. I don't know how to answer that question with words other than something along the lines of "Well, there aren't any skyscrapers...It's a gorgeous old city with a traditional feel but sometimes a modern twist." Which answer just falls flat. 

So as I wandered, I tried to remember to take photos. There is so much that I haven't captured and so many iconic places in the city that I haven't visited yet - notably among them the Olympic Park and the famous Biergardens. But here's a glimpse of the Munich that I'm getting to know. 

Something I really love about Munich is that there are lots of "passages" - you'll be walking along and turn into a tiny little covered alley between buildings, which more often than not opens into a courtyard with shops or a restaurant, or even just a mural in a tiny little space. You'll continue through this tucked-away, quiet space and then suddenly be out on another big street with bustle and traffic and lots of pedestrians. 


I also love the English Gardens - Munich's equivalent of Central Park. In the mornings, it's the domain of joggers, dog walkers, and young moms taking core strengthening classes. In the afternoons, it fills up with people picnicking, kicking the soccer ball around, reading, and just generally relaxing.  

The Fulbright year has begun. I'm so excited to see how it unfolds. 

No comments:

Post a Comment