My friend and I were in Prague and after a free ride to Vienna, in a van with five Polish men fell through, we were unsure of where to go next. So we did what any adventurous travelers would do. We packed up, headed to the train station and boarded the next train out. This one happened to be going to Dresden Germany. We arrived in Dresden where the train station is isolated at one end of this beautiful city. We booked a hostel at the train station and proceeded to walk from one end of town to the other in order to find it. Along the way we passed many beautiful places that we made note of to stop at after we had secured our things in the hostel.
We secured our things in the lockers provided and headed out into town. We headed down to the banks of the Danube which was a beautiful bank where people were flying kites, taking pictures, drinking and enjoying the unseasonable warm Germany weather. After a few moments, we decided it was time to make a friend. I had picked our friends in Prague, so it was time for my friend to make a choice. We looked and looked and suddenly there he was. An average, not scary looking at all, German man about our age. He was sitting shirtless in the sun with his camera on a tripod next to him. We approached and my friend said, “excuse me, are you shooting some sort of time-lapse?” His response was “yes, I was, but now I stopped. Do you like wine?” And suddenly we had a friend.
It turns out he had been shooting a time-lapse of the river and had picked up a bottle of wine and a six-pack, and had taken two sips of the wine and decided it was too sweet for him. He offered it to us and we gladly accepted. We sat with our new friend on the banks of the river. He was a wanderer like ourselves, though born and raised in Dresden. He was a lot of things, among them, photographer, skate boarder, and tour guide. He helped us take pictures of the Hoffirche during sunset and showed us how to use our fancy new cameras. We then took pictures on his tripod of the Frauenkirche during the blue hour. He then took us on our very own, private walking tour of the streets of Dresden.
He explained that the reason all of the buildings were still so beautiful was because, even though Dresden had been almost completely flattened during the war, Dresden had rebuilt everything to look almost exactly as it had before. The materials were different and more modern, but they were so proud of their history that they couldn’t let Dresden be rebuilt to look any different than it had.
We had the streets practically to ourselves as we saw the beauty of this city. At the Dresden wall of kings (Furstenzug) a man played his violin as we heard the history of the wall.
We agreed to meet our new friend the next afternoon for a taste of Currywurst and then headed back to our hostel for a few hours of sleep.
The next morning we explored the entire city. We went to the top of the Frauenkirche and looked down over the entire city. We saw the new town hall and the royal place and then met our new friend for currywurst. It is exactly what it sounds like and it is delicious. Bratwurst smothered in a mango curry sauce. mmmmm! Then he took us to a spot in a mall for the perfect photo of the dome. He ran off, but not before he agreed to meet us later to take us to a dance club.
We explored the neighborhood of our hostel and found the most adorable little shops. Back at our hostel we made new friends (two wild and crazy Australian girls who were moving to Scotland via a back packing trip through Europe.) We joined them at a beer garden and invited them to the dance club with us. We arrived at the dance club which looked as if it was in an old trailer park. There was even an old bus that had been turned into a lounge in the parking lot. We went inside and quickly began dancing the night away to American Rock and Roll. It was packed and hot and AMAZING. The five of us agreed to check in every 45 minutes in the same spot. We drank, we smoked cigarettes, we made even more new friends. One of us (it wasn’t me) even danced on a bar with five German men to a Green Day song. It was amazing, and we didn’t get back to the hostel until the sun was high in the sky.
In the morning light, Dresden glow had faded a bit and we decided it was time to move on. We packed up, stopped for one more sampling of CurryWurst, and bought train tickets to Berlin. Off on another adventure.