I finally made it back to Heidelberg! I really miss living there. Especially being back after living in another German city, I really appreciate just what a great place it is.
I arrived around noon at the train station, and walked to the house where I was staying. Lucile, Carolyn's friend from when we lived there, was at home and gave me the key and everything I needed. Then I walked downtown to meet Elizabeth Crea, a friend from Beloit. She was the first Beloiter I've seen since being here! We walked down the Hauptstraße, got ice cream at Eis Roma, and then walked across the Alte Brücke and along the Neckar. It was so good to see her! We stopped in H&M on the way back because I need a white shirt for Tough Mudder, and I ran into the younger brother of my best friend form Heidelberg in 9th grade, their oldest sister's husband, and his daughter. Of course they didn't remember me so then it was just... awkward. But I definitely didn't expect to see them!
Elizabeth happened to be staying on the same street as me, so I walked back with her and passed my old house. Our downstairs neighbors were outside for their daughter's birthday party, so I stopped back by after Elizabeth had to leave. It was nice to see them! Our landlord ended up moving into our place last summer, so I went up there and got to look around and talk to him. He has Parkinson's, so talking to him and understanding him was a little difficult, but it was good to see him too. At least it was in English - he's an American who married a German.
I left there and met my good friend Shiba from 9th grade. I've just gotta say, if it weren't for Facebook it would be a whole lot harder to stay friends with her. It was so good to see her again! And to hear what all our old classmates are doing. We walked around the Altstadt and down the Neckarwiese a bit, and then ate at Cafe Rossi. Eventually I went back to the Kingham's and drank wine while they ate dinner (it was almost 10pm so I didn't feel too bad that I had already eaten) and talked to them. This was one of those moments where I realized that my language skills actually improve. Like, I could have a real conversation with actual adults and I didn't feel that restricted by my language abilities.
Sunday morning, I woke up to thunder and rain so I just went back to sleep. It was amazing. I haven't slept in in a really long time. I ate breakfast, and then walked to the train station to meet Luke, a friend from high school. We walked up Philosophenweg to the Thingstätte, an amphitheater thing Hitler had built, and an old monastery a little further. It was really humid and we complained about it a lot, so that was fun. Then we walked back down to the Altstadt and down the Hauptstraße (surprise), across the bridge, and ate at an Irish Pub/restaurant. Then we walked along the Neckar again to the next bridge and to the train station. I love my friends here but it's so nice to talk to people who understand a different part of you! I said bye to him and went back to get my stuff and say goodbye.
I love Heidelberg, and even though I was only there for two years it will still always feel like home whenever I go there!