Lake Garda – Innsbruck – Seafeld – Cologne – 48 hours (~10 hours traveling, 6 sleeping)

I woke up and headed north to Innsbruck, Austria. The traffic out of the Italian holiday village is painfully slow as there is only 1 lane and many people heading home. As I was told about the Germans, “they are everywhere.” I learned about Euro license plates that show the country and then the first few letters are the town they are from.

I get to where I’m headed and see the sights of Innsbruck, and the surrounding towns, and the wheels start turning that there are places out there that are not Philadelphia which encompass beauty, an active lifestyle, and promote health and fulfillment. That’s not to say you cannot have that in Philly, but the scenery / people are upscale. I should point out that Innsbruck has a population of 300,000 and Austria only has 9 million, so this is not the density of the USA. Plus the area that I was in is extremely touristy for outdoor activities like skiing and hiking.

I went on a bike ride up a monster hill with the aide of an E-Bike which was awesome. The hill was steep, and I was in a high gear, and couldn’t figure out how I was supposed to make it up without having a heart attack. Plus, I’m looking at my phone trying to get to my destination without making a wrong turn on these winding paths. I eventually figured out the bike aided you more in a lower gear. Quite enjoyable. I biked to Seafeld and checked into my hotel and had a nice meal and a few drinks chatting with my Euro counterparts. The conversation with non-Americans is fun for me because I get to hear what people’s perception are of Americans and how they look at a meaningful life. This area of the country was clean, wealthy, and what I perceive as successful. I could see myself spending time there.

I woke up the next day early and went for a run at 6am and it was incredibly peaceful. There were no people around and the climate was perfect. After the run I floundered my way through a German breakfast at the hotel. It’s like you’ll see an orange cut in half and know intuitively how to eat it. Then you trying to scoop it out with a spoon and it creates a huge mess. I’m still not sure the proper way to eat that. After the breakfast I had another day of business and then got on a train to go to Cologne.

Here was another mess as my train had two connections. I got on the first train fine and found the next train to where I was going no problem. Then the second train broke down in a bumblefuck German town that probably isn’t even on a map. I’m talking not moving and no one was fixing it. 100 people rush to the bus station and fill the first bus to the brim. I wasn’t aggressive enough and had to wait an hour for another bus to come that eventually did. Everyone is paying with their cards and all I had was a 50 Euro bill. I tried to pay with it and the driver waved me on begrudgingly. I met a girl from England who helped me a bit along the way and I eventually got on an ICE train to Koln. When I got to Koln I checked into my hotel and went to sleep being exhausted from traveling.