Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany Jan 22-26

Shortly after Bucharest, we went on our second group trip. I’m not going to lie, details of both trips get a little smushed together in my brain. It’s not easy going on a long weekend trip, working one day, and then hopping on another plane for another weeklong trip. I know, hard life/first world problems. Believe me, laundry was a dire situation for about a month after these two escapades. However, it was worth it. An extended amount of time away from work is therapeutic. That being said, the pile of work when you return isn’t that awesome.

There is a wonderful resort geared towards military members and their dependents called Edelweiss Lodge and Resort in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. It’s about half an hour outside of Munich and a pretty drive from the airport up into the mountains. It’s kind of funny because the gate is just like any military base where guards check your ID on the way in, and they do random searches on vehicles, but once you’re in, it’s simply a vacation resort! How awesome that the military recognizes that MWR is just as important for mission readiness as anything else.

Our room a the resort was wonderful as noted below 🙂

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This was our view from our room, not a bad view to look at when you wake up in the morning.

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The blue street car is one of the first ones ever made. We got to see this on our way to our first tour which was a monastery and cheese factory!

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This was the monastery. Very old, lots of history and of course I waited to long to write this post so I’ve forgotten a lot of the good historical facts…. *sigh*

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This was a lot of our group. From left to right: Jake and Kim- I met Jake during command orientation, he works with radiation safety at the hospital, his wife Kim just graduated nursing school. Next there’s Kate and Matt- Kate is one of the pharmacists at the hospital. Then there’s me and Ben :)… Then Sam and Kyle who are both nurses at the hospital. Kyle’s active duty, Sam is civilian. And Renee is on the end, she’s another military nurse who works at the hospital. That’s not even everyone who came!

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Ben was pretending to be a monk. While we were walking around the monastery grounds, we saw one who waved happily to us. Our tour guide was surprised because they usually are not very friendly to visitors. Ben did a pretty good job pretending to be one 🙂

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All the people involved with helping at the monastery and cheese factory and where they were born.

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Inside the cheese factory. Yum!

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Delicious cheese samples!

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Our lunch of weiners, bread, cheese, apple juice and cola/orange juice drink. Only in Germany?

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The next day me, Sam, and Renee walked around the city on our own. It was wonderful and the outdoor farmer’s market was awesome!

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Only Sam would cross the street in Germany when you’re not supposed to!

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World War II Memorial

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Next guided tour: Castles!! Poor Ben went skiing the day before and hurt his back pretty badly so he stayed home during this excursion. It was probably a good idea with all the walking, hills, and stairs we walked that day!

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Later that night, we had dinner at a wonderful traditional German restaurant. Ben still didn’t feel good enough to go out so we brought him home some amazing food. He missed out on all the dancing and fun music though :/

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Kelly is at the end of the table (a military nurse I work with in the clinic). It was her birthday so she was being serenaded by that gentleman with the accordion!

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OMG best crepes with vanilla ice cream everrrr!

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On our last day there, before we got on a plane to go home, we ended up stopping at Dachau Concentration camp. It was the most somber and heartbreaking experiences I’ve ever had. Historically, Ben and I have avoided concentration camps on our trips around Europe, but going through something so significant with a group of friends to help get through it seemed like as good a time as any.

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This was my favorite picture of the whole museum. We didn’t take that many pictures, it felt a little strange. DSC02999 DSC03000 DSC03001 DSC03002 DSC03003 DSC03004 DSC03005 DSC03006 DSC03007 DSC03008 DSC03009 DSC03010 DSC03011 DSC03012 DSC03013 DSC03014 DSC03015 DSC03016

 

That sculpture was haunting and interesting. Visiting the concentration camp was a once in a lifetime experience. I’m glad we did, but it was quite overwhelming.

It was definitely an amazing trip. We were happy to visit Germany with a large group of friends. Hopefully we find time to go again next year because it was worth it. I didn’t do any skiing… I’m more of a hot chocolate by the fire kind of girl. And I think Ben probably regrets going in the first place because he felt so terrible afterwards. Either way we loved it and it was one of our most relaxing trips ever.

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