Unfortunately, we had to pack up and move from one hotel to another which led to some chaos in the morning. Now looking back, this image was somewhat of a prediction for the day….
Some have asked how I’m managing diabetes and international travel. There are a few tricky things. 1. I have all my insulin for the entire time I am gone. This means that it has to stay refrigerated. The hotels we have stayed in do not have refrigerators in our rooms so I entrust my insulin to the hotel staff. This has gone well so far but is somewhat unsettling. 2. There are SO MANY DELICIOUS carbs everywhere and meals sometimes come at odd hours.
This hasn’t been a normal diet for any of us and we are looking forward to cooking in our own kitchen in Bratislava. Thankfully, the carbs have been balanced by SO MUCH walking! Today was 8 miles in all- we did get lost a few times. This balancing act has generally worked out wonderfully save a few moments today. But, back to the adventures…
Again, we followed our virtual tour guide Phil’s advice and went straight to St. Peters Church to ascend the lookout tower first. St. Peters Church was dedicated in 1368!
Thankfully the 91 meters of steps to the tower were indoors or part of our family surely would have turned back. The views were stunning.
We then took time inside this beautiful church and lit candles for our family back home.
Next, we wandered around the pedestrian district for quite a while. I’m impressed with a few things in Germany. 1. They truly do close nearly everything on Sundays (this was a giant disappointment for the kids souvenir shopping). 2. Everything is so energy efficient. Even with these buildings that are often thousands of years old, the lights automatically turn off, the toilets use very little water and there is almost never any disposable paper. 3. There are so many walking zones. There are very few cars and the taxis are mostly all hybrids. There are zero SUVs and a few taxi vans. One thing we have struggled with- the public transit! It is a hard system to figure out and we have kept a sense of humor about it.
We then decided to explore more of the subway system to find Munich’s version of Central Park, called The Englischer Garten. When we exited the subway, we were immediately greeted by a delightful smaller park with coffee shops and bakeries. The kids immediately asked to play in it. I asked the German children to share a basketball with Ryan and they were happy to have him join them on the court. Joe ran to the playground and V went into babysitter mode, helping him to navigate the wonderfully engineered jungle gym.
Eventually, Joe was acclimated enough that I offered to take V to get a chai tea. The walk was beautiful. Even this German neighborhood was so mesmerizing that I got caught up in the moment with her and I honestly forgot I had diabetes. I didn’t bolus for the chai. For those that have diabetes, it is easy to imagine how the next few hours played out.
We came back to the courts and I loved seeing the international dads, moms and kids hooping it up, along with some soccer balls flying across the court.
Joe was completely covered in sand, wearing his new version of DRBS (dark red basketball shirt) and surely earned some comments in German about the American boy underdressed for this January day. He made an “American Ninja Warrior” video that he asked to send home to his Uncle Joe. I wish I could upload videos. 😉
We then walked to The Englischer Garten to look for the lake, only to find it dried up?! We laughed about that.
After nearly 8 miles of walking and hours of playing, we decided to head back to the subway to go back to the neighborhood where our hotel was located. In the underground station, I had the low blood sugar that came from dealing with the earlier high blood sugar. I did however have the very best cure for low blood sugar in German gummy bears. Diabetes just won’t let you forget for a minute.
After I recovered, we headed out for the best meal we have had so far on the trip. You might be thinking German food, but there was an Italian restaurant near our hotel that had amazing reviews. We laughed and thoroughly enjoyed our last meal together in Germany.
We walked back to our hotel laughing really hard about our new favorite German word, “ausfahrt.” In German, this means “exits meant for vehicles only”. In English, well, our family got real immature with the translation.
Tomorrow we depart for our home country for the next couple of months. We are all ready to plant ourselves in our apartment and settle in to some normalcy. We might be most excited to ditch this luggage and do some laundry! This part of the trip has exceeded all of our expectations though…