Traveling Europe together with the person you love is an extraordinary experience. It’s something that many couples dream of doing and even spend years planning and saving for.
It wasn’t an objective of ours, specifically, until we found ourselves rather suddenly relocating to Germany for Mr. Meena’s training. We began traveling Europe together because we wanted to take advantage of our time there. Our travels were born from opportunity.
As we traveled we started doing things we’d never done before; we experienced different cultures, tried new foods, and observed strange customs. Traveling was a constant stream of things we hadn’t encountered before. As we journeyed to foreign places we learned new things about each other and relearned things we’d forgotten over time. We had renewed appreciation for one another. In fact, part of the reason that I love to travel so much is that it allows to me know Mr. Meena in a deeper way. Our ordinary, everyday circumstances don’t necessarily prompt actions and reactions from him that teach me more about him.
I absolutely loved our year of traveling Europe together, so I’m chronicling our experiences. Here’s some of what I learned about my husband as we took every possible mode of transportation as far as it would take us during our time abroad.
On Traveling Europe Together.
Holiday Park, Germany.
Our first overnight trip together in Europe. Booking a rental car and driving on the autobahn. Having an enlightening German breakfast at the hotel. Celebrating your 25th birthday, riding new coasters together – your 200th coaster, in fact – and even being videotaped by a film crew.
I experienced your passion for coasters in a new way and loved taking in all the details of the German theme park with you.
Spending Thanksgiving in Munich. Traveling there via local trains and taking Koopa on his first trip within Germany. Figuring out how to take the subway. Walking around the incredibly beautiful Christmas Markets while snowflakes started to fall. Trying out new foods and walking until we were exhausted.
I learned that you love massive pretzels and really hate being cold. I remembered that you’re very skilled at navigating maps and directions (while I tend to get lost).
Celebrating our second anniversary in the Alps. Troubleshooting an unplanned rental car exchange in Ulm. Walking to the frozen lake near our rental and enthusiastically throwing rocks across the ice. Taking a day trip to Neuschwanstein Castle and disliking it equally.
I learned that you have built fires all your life and you’re very good at it.
Attempting to travel light for the first time. Being terrified to climb up a steel tower (even though you assured me – as an engineer – that it was perfectly safe). Staring in awe at the beauty of the Stuttgart library. Having a wonderful time wandering around and wishing we could stay longer.
I learned that you will happily carry my jacket and occasionally insist on visiting museums.
Being stunned by the seemingly tropical birds in the local park. Eating lunch in the sky while we enjoyed a slowly rotating view of the city. Learning that city breaks aren’t so bad after all.
I learned that you tend to be quietly selfless; you rarely complain when you don’t want to do something that’s important to me.
Arriving in a downpour and being overwhelmingly soaked by the time we made it to the hotel. Discovering that practically the entire city was under construction. Standing in the middle of the street discussing history together. Watching people ice skate in front of the palace.
I learned that authentic movie experiences can make you really happy (and that you are willing to sacrifice a lot of sleep in order to have them).
Seeing the spot where Martin Luther stood during the Diet of Worms. Finding Reese’s in a gas station (and purchasing them without hesitation). Having no idea why you were so excited about a bridge tower – until I saw it. Accidentally trespassing because our translation skills were sub par.
I learned that you are quite good at trip planning and that I love acting a bit childlike with you.
Taking a mostly unplanned trip together. Struggling to find a path to the castle ruins. Having so much fun with a sweet lady at the tiniest pizza place we’ve ever been to. Searching endlessly for a cemetery that we never found.
I discovered that you enjoy making any situation fun – especially the mediocre ones.
Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
Watching the countryside roll by outside our window on our longest train journey together. Finding tulips in unexpected places. Taking our first boat tour and staying in our first hostel. Being humbled, curious, and fascinated as we explored together.
I realized just how lovingly protective you are.
Riding Dragon Khan at Portaventura after you’d waited nearly 20 years to do so. Going the extra mile when my pain and the parks’ policies weren’t compatible. Looking out at the gorgeous blue water and stuffing ourselves with fresh strawberries. Walking the narrow streets, greeting the friendly locals, and wishing that we never had to leave.
I learned that the simple things in life will always make you happy.
Pushing ourselves beyond our limits. Walking in the rain because we refused to give up any moment of our already short trip. Seeing famous sites that prompted unexpected emotion. Discovering how much we love Vapiano.
I learned that you really, really love currywurst, you’re not easily impressed, and you can be surprisingly stubborn.
Europa Park & Tripsdrill, Germany.
Driving through the black forest in awe and wanting to stop and take in the sights every five minutes. Having fun at the parks riding the intense rides and the silly little ones, too. Talking about how much my Dad would have loved to be there.
I realized that I’m starting to love the coaster trips almost as much as you do, and that you’re the best coaster partner I could ever ask for.
On Traveling Europe Together: we loved it because we learned & relearned things about one another. Click To Tweet
Featured photo and above photo by Rebekah Jackson photography.
Above photo modified by My Meena Life.