Everyone’s travel experience is unique. You might want something different out of a visit to Berlin than I might want. Some people go for the nightlife, some for the history, and others for the monuments. And sometimes, things just happen…like that time we closed a Berlin bar.
This is one of those stories that is just a story. It’s a memory for me and a demonstration to you that when you keep your mind open, happy things can happen that you could have never imagined.
We went to see a lots of historical sights because they are part of recent history that we don’t want to see repeated. But after a day of hard core life, we decided to go to a local institution. It’s an old bar/restaurant with not much on the menu except delicious schnitzel and a bunch of German beers. It’s no secret we love food! I mean, we even did a Berlin Food Tour with Bite Berlin to get a taste of the city. But nothing can give you that authentic feel as much as wandering into a local dive bar on your own.
It all started innocently enough. We made a reservation, but showed up and they didn’t have it. We got lucky though and a table just opened up for four people and he asked if we minded sharing with two others (another couple). We wanted to eat and we’re used to tight restaurant spaces, so why not?
The whole meal was delicious but uneventful. We knew the woman was German but couldn’t quite figure out where the man she was with was from. A few times we asked her a question of what something was on the menu since she was speaking English to the man and knew she could understand us.
After the last bite, something happened and we all got in a conversation. I don’t remember what any of it was about, but it lasted a long time! We learned about them, they learned about us and we just sat there refilling our drinks as we went. The server/bartender/manager guy loved interacting with us so we had no problem just hanging out. He would joke with us and with me about not drinking beer (I’m sorry, I just don’t like it!) and even joined us for a bit.
We all drank fairly slowly, but then, another German joined us. I honestly have no clue where he came from. Nobody knew him, but the woman we were with invited him to join our very enthusiastic table. Someone bought shots for the entire table, and not even 20 minutes later, someone else bought shots for the whole table.
I remember one tasted like mouthwash, and I couldn’t even tell you what the other was. About that time I realized that everyone else had left. It was just our table of five at the point hanging out with the server/bartender/manager guy. Obviously we were feeling good, full, and happy we made new friends, so of course we took a photo! So, here’s us, all behind the bar of this local German restaurant/bar in Berlin.
It’s seriously one of the best travel experiences. Lesson: Be open for random encounters. Obviously stay safe (and we were), but enjoy meeting new people and open for spontaneity.
[bctt tweet=”Travel Lesson: Be open for random encounters. ” username=”AWlustForLife”]
What is the best experience you’ve ever had with strangers while traveling?