A cold day in Dusseldorf
Dusseldorf Travel Blog› entry 2 of 4 › view all entries
Better to have traveled and lost luggage, than never to have traveled at all.............................
A fool and his luggage are soon parted..........
Lose my luggage once, shame on you. Lose it twice, shame on me (for having checked it in the first place)..............
Lest you think we were a bit miffed for having landed with only the clothes on our backs, I will have to say that it was actually quite the opposite. Okay, maybe just that little bit of luggage separation anxiety in the beginning but we quickly saw the brighter side of the situation. Once we told the baggage agent that we were continuing on to Frankfurt after "doing the Christmas market" in Dusseldorf for the day, he advised us that not only would they automatically forward our wayward bag to Frankfurt but also deliver it to our hotel.
After a quick lesson by a very friendly gentleman on how to use the ticket machine in the rail station at the airport, we were on our way to the main rail station in Dusseldorf city center. It was about a 15 minute ride to the city center and the station was a virtual spider's web of boarding platforms, voies, or gleis (in whatever language you speak).
Our luck held as we escaped the relative warmth of the underground station and stepped out into the frigid temperatures of a typical winter day in Deutschland. By this time we had been awake nearly 24 hours and were falling prey to the haze of sleep that threatened to envelope us if we remained warm and comfortable.
The Dusseldorf Christmas market was a plethora of "foreign" sights and smells. It is not as large as the Frankfurt market (which we later discovered) but it held its own, stretching out over four squares and two long streets and trailing a little ways along the Rhein river that runs through the city. In total, there were close to 250 decorated "huts" which ranged from the expected nostalgic, German gingerbread type enclosures to the tacky American "midway" style that you'd find at a State Fair in the U.
Hot mulled wine, or gluhwein and heise Schokolade, otherwise known as hot chocolate were enticing to the senses but we were pulled toward the bratwurst stand where "the best of the wurst" could be had for about two euros each. Beware of the mustard though. I discovered, too late, that this was the hot mustard for which Germany is famous. I ended up ditching the bun, which I had slathered with the evil condiment, and consumed the weenie bare-handed.
The early afternoon was looming and mindful of the time and firm in the knowledge that our aching joints and swollen feet would not stand the long walk back to the station, we tried our luck with the "U", Germany's version of the Underground, subway system, Metro or whatever you want to call it.
We took the ICE train from DUS to FRA and no, that was not the climate of the car in which we sat. This is the highspeed train, much like France's TGV, quiet, clean and very efficient. Although I have to admit, I do like the TGV better, maybe because I can read the writing on the walls more easily in French ! So, we arrived in FRA and, THANK GOD, only had the equivlent of about a block and a half to walk before we arrived at our hotel.