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Schlagermove – Hamburg, Germany July 2, 2011

Posted by Marnie Williams in Travel Log.
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Bienvenidos a Alemania!

After the Cadiz program finished in Madrid, I traveled to Germany to visit a girl who studied abroad at my high school my senior year.  I had messaged her when I found out I was going to Cadiz and asked if I could come visit her for a couple days, and it turned into me being in Hamburg for a week (and Berlin with her aunt for 3 days!)  It’s crazy how we have the ability to make connections with people halfway across the world.  It’s been absolutely incredible seeing the city from a native’s perspective, especially since she’s my age.  I had the opportunity to go to 2 different birthday parties and I got to spend the day touring the city with Nina (my friend) and her two friends.  It was awesome because one of them had spent a year studying in England and the other one was fluent in Spanish because she had studied in Costa Rica, so together we could all communicate pretty well.

Today we went to Schlagermove – a huge festival in Hamburg that celebrates German music from the 70s.  Everyone dresses up super crazy hippy style and goes into the streets and dances and drinks and it’s pretty much just one huge day party.  The coolest part was that it was raining and cold (at the beginning of summer?  Lame) but thousands of people still came out to celebrate.  Shlagermove is kind of like a parade in that people crowd the streets, but instead of floats there are these big trucks that BLAST music.  The trucks have trailers that people pay to ride around the city and the rest of the people just walk all around the streets and follow them through.

Even though the only words I understood from the music were “Viva Espana” and “Let’s Dance”, the language barrier couldn’t keep me from jumping up and down with the crowds and pretending like I knew what was going on.  It’s weird being in a country where you literally can’t understand ANYTHING but it’s also really humbling and something I think everyone needs to do.  My advice: pick Germany, because have yet to meet a German that doesn’t understand basic English.

Me, Nina and Christina

Leaving the Metro station

The streets

Snow White! It's German tradition that a bride-to-be and her fiance go out the day before the wedding, and she sells drinks to men on the street. The men buy the drinks and give her a kiss, right in front of her fiance!

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