the single woman

Stuttgart Travel Blog

 › entry 11 of 75 › view all entries
After travelling alone and having a few days travelling around with people Ive met, I have decided that its actually been easier going around by myself.  When you hang out with someone else and are speaking English all the time, no one talks to you!  And meeting people - local or tourist - is the most interesting part of travelling.  Also, people are so much more helpful when you wander about alone.  I think its the pity thing - so far I have yet to carry my own bag on a train or up stairs, people pop up and ask if they can give me directions so often that I hardly have a chance to open my map, and they are amused enough to give me endless language lessons.  But when there are two of you, suddenly you are the ugly Americans and there is much less friendliness!  How sad.  Just another sign that I am meant to be a lone wolf.  haha.

I know German is the root of English, but its still ten times harder to understand than French.  Today I ordered dinner without having any clue what I was doing.  Not everyone in Europe speaks English.  And before one congratulates oneself on finding a non-touristy restaurant to eat in, one should remember that means you cant read the menu and the staff may not speak English.  But I got it across that I wanted meat and just trusted him to bring me something non-gross and it was fine.  Who knew I didnt need to specify the exact preparation of my meal to be happy?

Stuttgart is a really nice city - and amazingly big!  I had never even heard of it before I came, but its huge and the capital of the area.  Kind of like Fresno or Modesto.  (Which reminds me - in London I met a guy who grew up in Stratford-Upon-Avon.  I didnt know people really lived there!  Thats like when I found out real people lived in Anaheim and Emeryville).

Anyways, Stuttgart is really high-tech and modern.  In some ways it reminds me of Taipei.  Theres all this technology and prosperity that the citizens are clearly comfortable with.  Mercedes-Benz is like the Haas of the city - their logo is so prolific they might as well be handing out free cars (they arent though, I checked at the museum today).  But there are also all of these old buildings and pre-war history mixed in with everything and I feel like the people just arent quite sure what to make of it or what to do with them.  So everyone is out on the busy shopping streets and partying it up at the Wasen (their version of Oktoberfest), but there are still tables full of embroidery and old books at markets just a few blocks away.

Speaking of the Mercedes museum, I went today and good thing it was free because I lost interest after the first 2 floors.  When I realized there were EIGHT total, I left.  EIGHT floors dedicated to one car company??  Even if Google made a museum, there wouldnt be eight floors.   How can there possibly be enough stuff to fill that much space?  Is this how men feel about department stores?
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photo by: lapostol77