7 million steps to heaven

Leipzig Travel Blog

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Leipzig imho is one of the most underrated cities in Germany.

The day before the Wave-Gotik-Treffen, the big annual goth festival that was my main reason for visiting (I will post a review later), started, I went sight-seeing, something I`d never really done there before, although this was my 4th visit. The old town is real pretty. Amongst others I saw the Thomaskirche in which J.S. Bach is buried. After that I went to the Voelkerschlachtdenkmal, a very impressive monument commemorating the battle of nations in which Napoleon`s army was defeated. I had been inside for concerts, but never went all the way to the top. I did that now, and even though it takes about 7 million steps, the view was well worth it. Next up was the Suedfriedhof, a big park-like cemetary right next to the Voelkerschlachtdenkmal.

You know how I was raving about globalfreeloaders.com? Well I had my first experience with it in Leipzig, and it wasn`t quite as nice as I`d expected. The first night started OK though, I had dinner with my host and we went to some stupid party together - I knew (and thought she knew, since I had explained my plans to go to the WGT and come home in the middle of the night most nights in my introductory message quite clearly) we wouldn`t spend much time together later, so I did whatever she wanted to do. She gave me a key right away. The days after that indeed I hardly ever saw her or her roommates, but whenever we did see each other we talked a bit and I assumed everything was cool.

But then on monday all that changed. My host told me she`d thought I was leaving on sunday, while I had always said I was staying for a week, so until wednesday. Maybe she`d read "for a week" as "until the end of the week", or maybe it was just an excuse to kick me out, which is basically what she did. I started packing, and decided to put my stuff in a locker in the train station, stay at the Moritzbastei (a series of underground vaults used as a complex of pubs, restaurants, concert venues and dancefloors, where I spent every night during the festival) all night and then take a train to Poland in the morning. Then while I was packing her roommate came over and told me she thought I`d been a bad guest. She threw me some ridiculous accusations like I "showed no interest", "did not show any appreciation" and "did not try to integrate myself". As my friend Merrick said later that day, what did they expect? Doesn`t a name like globalfreeloaders imply that it`s a service for people looking for a place to crash, rather than some sort of dating service? And while it`s true I didn`t help out around the house, what could I have done? If they had left a bunch of dirty dishes in the sink I would have cleaned them, or if they had left me a grocery list or asked me to do anything else I would have gladly taken care of it, but as it is the opportunity never arose. So I cleaned every glass or cup I used immediately, cleaned the bath after having used it, I would have offered to cook for them on tuesday, I never bothered anyone, and if that`s not enough well I`m sorry. When I was almost finished packing both of them came in again and said I could perhaps stay anyway and sleep on the floor (as the roommate in whose room I was staying was coming back) because they didn`t want me to have to sleep on the street but fuck that I don`t need their sympathy, and I can take care of myself perfectly well thank you very much.

I still love Leipzig though.

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photo by: aloneinthecrowd