My Morning in Leipzig

I caught a car ride into Leipzig with Nicole’s brother Brett and their father Steve. Babies and toddlers can make quite a mess, so they were going into town with a trunk load of laundry. Laundry was 3.50 euros per load which I found shocking in my mind when I converted that to Canadian dollars, but if you just think in Euros, its not that much different at home..

Once the laundry was sorted and shoved in the washer (with panel instructions in German, French, and English) Steve and Brett dropped me downtown in front of the Paulinum, the famous university building I wanted to see. However, first thing first: I needed breakfast. So I went in search of a bakery.

Leipzig was exactly as you’d expect a European city to be: brick-lain streets, grand old buildings, cafes and bicycles. I wandered sown a little plaza that looked like it could have been out of Poirot. Many of the shops were closed at this hour, but I looked in their windows as I passed.

There was a shop dedicated entirely to silk bow ties – then a liquor shop with the most exquisite selection of Islay whiskeys in the window. Low and behold it was open, so I wondered in! I was awe of the many bottles of whiskey, port, gin, and wine that I’d never seen at home, with their stately label designs. The shop had a great selection of single serve bottles too, so I treated myself to a Laphroaig Islay single malt whiskey. It would be perfect for a cold night in Iceland.

I popped my head into about 4 bistros before I saw an Irish terrier outside a quaint bakery. I thought “That’s my kind of dog! Must be my kind of bakery!” The dog wagged its tail as I entered the bakery and I smiled back at it.

When I tried to order in German, the server spoke to me in English. However, when I asked in English what was pastry was the bakery’s specialty, it was beyond our communication abilities (my waving at the pastries probably furthered the confusion). I ended up ordering one that had little green berries and sweet cheese between sheets of soft flaky pastry.

As I sat down in a cushioned wicker chair on the street, I thought “This is the life!” Here I was, overlooking a cobble street, sipping a cup of European coffee with a fine pastry watching the world go by. I was in complete bliss – its moments like this that make life wonderful. I felt so happy sitting there.

I walked around Leipzig, wandering into churches and admiring old buildings. My favourite were the churches – they were so grand! I was able to read up on everything I passed as Nicole had given me a guide book for the city.

An Afternoon in Leipzig

Once I found my way back to the train station, I found Wi-Fi to coordinate with Nicole. Unlike train stations in Canada, there were lots of interesting food options. I went to a very German looking place and ordered the currywurst. I thought it would be a curry flavoured sausage on a bun, but instead I got a chopped up hot dog in a bowl of tomato sauce with curry powder sprinkled on top. It was a actually quite good.

For dessert, I got a Leipzig lerch – a jam filled tart. I had seen them at the bakery I had been to this morning, and as these ones were half the price, I thought I’d try one. It was very good, and i decided then and there that I could eat my way through Europe. No European handbags or shoes for me – just food!

We decided that I’d meet Nicole and her mum at the bridal store instead of home, so I left the train station and started to make my way across town. Back home, I would never have jumped at the opportunity to take a half hour walk, but this was Europe and things were different. I had a grand old time taking photos along the way. I was particularly fascinated with the blue fabric that buildings under renovation are wrapped in. Made me think of that artist who wrapped Central Park in brightly coloured fabric.

The highlight of the walk was an old graveyard. There were concrete tigers, bare breasted maidens, harps, and angels – some with no heads! Of the dates I could still read, most of the tombstones were from the mid 1800’s. It was a very quiet place, shaded by trees with just the sound of the birds and passing traffic.

The bridal store was quite fun. I got to see Nicole in her wedding dress for the first time and she looked exquisite. I kept gawking thinking, “Wow!” Nicole looked absolutely stunning – and that was without the makeup or hairdo! I cant wait to see her walk down the aisle on Saturday!

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