Saturday, September 21, 2013

The expat life

A little over a month ago, two of our friends tied the knot in a beautiful ceremony that Terry and I could not attend (plane tickets back home were around $1,300 for one person in August). They honeymooned in Italy and when they realized that they would have a layover in Frankfurt, they decided to add a day there onto their itinerary so that we could come down there to see them. We ended up going on Wednesday, which was Terry's birthday.

Prior to their arrival, Kim emailed us asking for recommendations of what to do/see/eat in Frankfurt. I think she was expecting a list of cool, unique sights along with some of the usual touristy sights that are requisite in any big city. That wasn't what she got.

Frankfurt is about an hour to an hour and a half away from us (depending on how fast you go down the Autobahn and how bad traffic is once you actually get within the city limits). The closest Apple store to us is there. Most of our trips to Frankfurt coincide with me breaking an iPhone. We also use our trips there as an excuse to get away from our community and just have a relaxing overnight trip and get some Starbucks. Also, Chipotle opened in Frankfurt on September 9th and we have been so excited to try it so we told them that was an absolute must. (Before you judge us too harshly, remember that Terry hasn't lived in the United States for a little over 5 years and for me it's been just over 3 years.)

We met them at their hotel and took a cab to Chipotle (10€ for 4 people- basically cost the same as it would have to take the Ubahn- Frankfurt's subway system). When we got there, we could hardly contain our excitement and of course started taking pictures of the outside of the damn building:
Wthout meaning to, we both posted this same picture on facebook with the caption Finally!!!!! at almost the same instant. What can I say? We were excited!

Justin and Kim couldn't stop laughing and shaking their heads. We got inside and after a quick glance at the menu, they got sticker shock. Honestly, after living here for over 3 years, we don't even notice it any more. It was 9€ for a burrito or a bowl (don't even talk to me about how much they cost in the States) so they decided to split one. No way were we going to share! Drinks were obscenely expensive. I'm talking 4€ for a bottled water or Coke expensive. What are they putting in there? Gold-plated foie gras flakes? We decided to pass. We both got steak burritos and an order of chips and salsa. 20€. Ouch. I'd be lying if I said they weren't worth every single euro cent.
just look at those happy faces!

Chipotle is in a brand new mall that just opened on August 31st, so Kim and I walked around for a bit while the boys sat behind and talked about beer. No luck shopping but we did have to stop by for a drink at Starbucks. It seemed just mean of them to have this adorable pumpkin but not to actually have pumpkin spice lattes. He was cute so I semi forgave them.
I forget exactly how much my drink cost, but roughly 10,000€ for a grande sounds about right. I also got a slice of salted caramel cheesecake so figure another 389€ for that. (I'm exaggerating here but not nearly by as much as you think.)

Post-Starbucks, we took another 10€ cab ride back to their hotel. (I'll take "World's Priciest Burrito for $200, Alex.) After some beers (guys) and wine (girls) in their room, we decided it was time for dinner.  (I'm skipping ahead a bit but just pretend I mentioned the part where we took them shopping to show them the good gummy bears and chocolate and beer to bring back home, k?) They asked for a recommendation for dinner. We told them we don't eat German food. In Germany. Hardly ever. (We went to a highly recommended German restaurant in Frankfurt once. The menu had pictures of what animal was in the dish. We ordered something that had a cow next to it. Apparently a picture of a cow is German for "three strips of bacon." We gave up. It's hard being pretty much the only living Jews in Germany. Or some days it seems like it.) So we recommended an Italian place and a Thai place. Shockingly enough, after 2 weeks in Italy they weren't looking forward to Italian food in Germany, so to Thai we went. It was fantastic. Insert another pre-dinner stop at a store for beer/chocolate/marzipan here.

After dinner, it was time for dessert, and wanting to provide our American visitors with the true German experience, only one place would do.
Please excuse the hot mess look here- it had been raining in true German fashion.
The last time we were in Frankfurt, ya know the last time I had a broken iPhone, we saw that a Dunkin Donuts was finally opening there. 3 days later. Go figure. We had been looking forward to getting some donuts for so long. I'm not sure how much donuts cost in the States, but I'm assuming it sure as heck isn't 1,80€/donut. Terry wanted to only get 1 donut each. I told him he was crazy and got 6. It's a good thing I did. I don't have pictures of the actual donuts themselves because they did not live long enough to be photographed but just imagine 3 Boston Cream, 1 glazed, and 2 vanilla frosted with sprinkles inside that box. (I know it's really hard to use your imagination here because without instagram, how would y'all even know what a donut looks like in the first place?) I should also mention that much like everything else in Germany, Dunkin Donuts is cash-only and after a pit stop for beer, we were fresh out so we had to race to find an ATM about 3 blocks away 10 minutes before they closed. I had to beg the lady behind the counter to put 2 Boston Cream aside for me. Good thing I did, because by the time we came back for them, they were sold out of the others!

By the time we were done with Donut-gate it was after 10pm and we still had a long drive ahead of us followed by Terry needing to be at work at 7am the next time so after many hugs (girls) and half man-hug, half handshake combos (guys), we parted ways.

I skipped over a few moments in this post, but Justin and Kim, I just want to say that we had so much fun with you on Wednesday and I am so so glad we got to see you! So glad we were able to provide you with the true, local, German experience.

All of these expat adventures resulted in this:

My Visa is now crying dusty tears. Excuse me while I go sell my kidney.


  1. Looks like you had a great trip to Frankfurt with your friends! I'm completely the same way when it comes to American things in London.

  2. Haha it's so crazy how much you start to miss American things when living abroad! I get so excited when I have little moments that make me feel like I'm back in the USA!

  3. My boyfriend and I went to Berlin over the summer and there were Dunkin Donuts everywhere! More so than when I was in the States.

  4. Sounds completely worth it to me!

  5. So cute! Sometimes you just crave your hometown treats! I mean, I live in upstate NY and get excited when I go home to FL and see my favorite Cuban fast food restaurant, which of course doesn't exist in pasta-ville where I live now.


  6. Freaking hilarious. I literally laughed the whole time at this post. Sounds about par for the course for the four of you. Totes jeal that you all WENT AND HAD A TON OF FUN WITHOUT ME ATHANKYOUVERYMUCH. xoxo BFF JILL and Bridesmaid to both. :)

  7. We had so much fun! I enjoyed the "full expat experience" and the Thai food was delicious! I am just excited about all the chocolate and marzipan that came home with me. ;) xoxo

  8. Looks like you has such a wonderful trip! I love your blog and this post!