This evening we’re heading out to Germany, the Czech Republic and Poland for a two week trip. I’d call it a “vacation”, but that makes it sound like a great escape that we excitedly planned haha This was just leftover Ireland plane tickets that I was going to lose the value of if we didn’t use them before May and we were limited to Ireland, Berlin or Madrid. Since we just went to Spain and well, Ireland didn’t really want us…I chose Berlin since we’ve never been there.

Really, outside of World War II knowledge, I didn’t know much about Poland or the Czech Republic….I vaguely remember the Berlin wall coming down as a very young kid.. so I went into this trip sort of blind about what we would find to do. I fully admit to a lot of history reading and research for this trip! I was worried this was just going to be a 2 week super-depressing concentration camp/Hitler tour haha but I think we were able to incorporate WWII sites and history with plenty of other cultural things as well. But prepare…WWII touched everything here. More like demolished everything here. So its hard to discuss most things without at least including that context.

Itinerary highlights for this trip: We are flying overnight into Berlin via Iceland, followed by Dresden, then into the mountains known as Saxon Switzerland in the Czech Republic. Cutting into Poland to visit Wroclaw (pronounced something like RO-clawv – Polish and Czech are HARD to pronounce it turns out! ha) then to Prague in the Czech Republic, next- a tour all around Poland: visiting the Auschwitz concentration camp, Krakow, Warsaw, Gdansk and back to Germany for a couple towns like Potsdam and Leipzig. All the yellow marks on the map are places we’ll be visiting.

We usually stay in AirBnb houses or apartments but the last couple trips I have had some issues with people cancelling our reservations same day, not being around, the property not really being clean or really even being a rental… I guess just since AirBnb has gotten so big and easily accessible, there are more people using it that just shouldn’t. This trip we stuck to mostly hotels…only one apartment- in Prague that seems like it will be awesome, right downtown overlooking a big historic bridge. Here’s hoping anyway.

We should have a good mix of city, country, history, modern, beach and mountains in this trip and hopefully some great Polish food. This is the first time we will have visited a country with Russian history, so seeing Soviet influences and residual culture will be neat.

There is a little area on the edge on Northeast Poland that is actually still owned by Russia. There is a city there called Kaliningrad that I thought might be neat to visit… so I looked into what it would take to visit. Basically, long story short… as Americans, we cant. They offer a 3 day visa for Canadians and Europeans…but not for Americans….and after the events of the last few weeks with Russia, I think it best to stay firmly in the EU for now 🙂 I’ve never met a Russian person I didn’t like… but I fear their government. But never judge a people by it’s government. haha

While we’re both exhausted from work and house projects-(Kegan built a fence around our house this week and I’ve spent all week in Alabama on a red-alert client issue) I hope the trip is worth the time away. We just got some drywall finished up that will allow us to finally finish our master bedroom and dining room and it’s prime gardening time, so really about the least ideal time for us to pick up and spend two weeks away…but thankful for family to watch the dog and water my plants!

We are currently boarded and leaving Chicago.

Kegan is already disappointed because he thought they said there was an “orgy” on board 🙄 Boys. Haha

They just brought Norah a cute little travel bag with a bottle of water, a padded eye mask for sleeping, headphones and a turkey sandwich. Pretty cool.

I’ll post after Berlin. See ya soon!