Less than two months ago, my sister-in-law (technically, my sisters' sister-in-law) Jamie asked me if I wanted to come to Luxembourg with her while she traveled for a business trip. The kicker was, it would be about eleven days. I hemmed and hawed about it for a few weeks, and didn't have to commit right away because none of the dates or schedules were set in stone. I was really unsure of leaving my family behind for such a long time, but having considered the advice of MANY people, I took the are-you-crazy-to-miss-an-opportunity-like-that feedback I received to heart.
So, four weeks ago I booked my flight, and here I am!
This is my first time traveling internationally. I've dreamt about traveling through Europe, scaling castle walls and picking my way through European flea markets. I've researched traveling on a European picking tour complete with a travel coordinator, moving company and shipping agency. But at a cost upwards of $20,000, it's never been something I could realistically consider. Plus, I like to find ways to cut out the middle man which allows me to lower prices and maximize profits.
This is my "guinea pig" trip. I'm trying it out to see if I could make an annual trip to Europe turn a profit. Luxembourg just so happens to be a great place to do just that. The smallest country in Europe, Luxembourg is wedged between France to the south, Belgium to the west and Germany to the east. It has a population 1/4 that of Los Angeles and is smaller than LA County in land size. The bordering countries are less than hour away from the capital.
Although this will be a "picking" trip, today I spent my time familiarizing myself with Luxembourg City, the Capital.
This city has all of the charm I would expect from a historically rich, European city...minus the graffiti.
Narrow, cobblestone streets appearing between old buildings make you feel almost as though you might be trespassing in someones driveway or front yard.
This area is the City Centre. It was quiet. Eerily so...and empty. Keeping in mind that this is the Capital City of the country, I would have expected lots of pedestrians and traffic...particularly at 10:30 am on a Monday morning.
In one of the main squares, there is an annual Christmas Market that takes place daily for a month before Christmas.
Local artisans sell their creations and many ethnic eating options including spaetzles!
I didn't actually eat any but took this photo for my mom who makes spaetzles every Thanksgiving and Christmas. I don't like them, but these sure smelled good and they were fried with bits of ham in them.
It looks as though tomorrow I may be visiting one of the large castles in Northern Luxembourg. The debate is whether to take the train or drive. With driving comes the opportunity to stop off at any places of interest, but then I may never make it to my actual destination. So, we'll see.
By the way...I wasn't cold at all! In fact, by noon I was stripping off gloves, hats and scarf. That was a relief to this poor California girl.