A meander around Munich

The morning after I landed from Manchester, I headed straight back to the airport for my next flight – Munich, Germany. As my family live in Austria I thought it would be a great opportunity for them to come and visit, however Harry was the only one who could make it. After a quick plane ride from Vienna he arrived in Munich shortly after I got to our hotel.

Since the weather was so lovely we decided to head straight out into the city, which is only a short underground ride from the hotel. Before we even got to the underground we stumbled across a market selling lots of lovely fresh fruit and veg. Of course I couldn’t resist a few punnets of strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and some fresh asparagus that is in season right now. After dropping those back off in the hotel we soon arrived in the town centre.

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The main square in Munich, the Marienplatz, has a huge cathedral and as we arrived we realised it was just coming up to the hour, so we stayed (along with hundreds of other tourists!) to watch the Glockenspiel – while the church bells ring the figurines go around and it’s almost like a little show. Impossible to take pictures of though, haha!

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We walked around quite a bit of the city centre, just enjoying the lovely sunny weather.

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After a while we decided it was time for an ice cream, so stopped and found a little cafe in the sun.

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We then headed over towards the English Gardens. This is a huge park that spans over 370 Hectares and is actually one of the world’s largest urban parks, even bigger than Central Park in New York! Of course we couldn’t explore all of it that evening, so just had a nice walk around.

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As some of the crew had arranged to meet for dinner, we headed back to the hotel for some delicious asparagus ravioli, crisp white wine, and finished off with some traditional “Kaiserschmarren”.

Having been awake since before 5am that morning, I realised I was actually quite tired, and headed up to bed leaving Harry to chat with the rest of the crew for a bit longer.

The next morning we forced ourselves to the gym, and then to cancel all of our hard work out went straight on to breakfast and tried a bit of everything! I find the breakfasts in Germany to be the best; there’s always so much choice and it’s all so fresh!

A quick trip to the supermarket to stock up on a few essentials and all too soon it was time to start getting ready for the flight home. Harry left to get a train to Austria to see the family for a couple of days, and it was back to the airport and sunny Dubai for me.

Thanks for coming all the way to Munich Harry! 🙂

Also just realised I haven’t posted my roster for this month, so here goes:

  • Manchester (check my previous post for this layover!)
  • Munich
  • Zurich
  • Casablanca
  • Hong Kong (so looking forward to this flight, I haven’t been since my very first flight on the A380; I think there’s a post about it somewhere near the beginning of my blog!)
  • Bombay (t/a)
  • London Heathrow

I’m hoping to get back into blogging a little bit more this month after taking a little break, so if there’s anything you’d like me to write about feel free to leave a comment! 🙂

 

P.s. If you want more regular day to day updates of what is happening in my life, follow me on Twitter and Instagram @rachelwwilson!

Catching up

So after a month of no blogging I decided it was about time I wrote something again! Sometimes life gets in the way and things happen that you weren’t expecting.

The best cure? A day out with your best friend. Luckily, after a few tough weeks and not everything going as I had hoped, this was exactly what was on the cards, and after a busy flight to Manchester I was ready to go.

I hopped on the train to Sheffield, where Lucy is at university, and it was a beautiful sunny day. She was waiting for me at the train station, and we strolled down one of the main streets for a browse in the shops. (Of course!)
As she had to go to lectures in the afternoon and I had to get back to Manchester in time for the wake up call, we only had a few hours to spend together. After a spot of shopping we headed over towards the cathedral.

ImageAs you can see the sun was out and it was a lovely day!

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We chose a little cafe next to the cathedral and sat by the window.

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Before we knew it, we’d ordered cream tea…scones with jam, clotted cream and a big pot of tea! 

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We sat and chatted until Lucy was going to be late for her lecture and I was going to miss the train if we didn’t stop talking, so she dropped me off at the station and we went our separate ways. The day was definitely far too short, but it was so lovely to catch up and get some much needed advice from one of the people who knows me best!

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I tried to get a picture of all the lovely hills covered in tiny little lambs, but of course the train was going a bit too fast! When I see the beautiful countryside England has to offer, I do sometimes wish I still lived there….and then I remember that 99% of the time it’s raining, haha!

A day trip in the sunshine with my lovely best friend was just what I needed, and it has definitely cheered me up a whole lot!

 

P.s. If you want more regular day to day updates of what is happening in my life, follow me on Twitter and Instagram @rachelwwilson!

 

Rainy Osaka

This morning I got back from a flight to Osaka, Japan. We arrived at our hotel early evening and arranged to go to dinner. We couldn’t decide between sushi and another Japanese speciality (which I have now forgotten the name of!) but on the first officer’s recommendation we chose the latter. Close to the hotel there is a whole area full of restaurants so we walked over, ready for some dinner.

ImageI’d forgotten that so many restaurants in Japan display all of their dishes in plastic versions in the window!

ImageImageLet’s be honest, it doesn’t look very appetising, at all. I don’t think I could tell you what’s inside either, but it’s always fun to try something new!

The next morning a big group of us had made plans to go to Kyoto, however when I got downstairs only 4 of us had made it. The others had obviously seen the pouring rain and decided to stay in bed! We walked to the train station and got on a train, hoping it would take us in the right direction! Once we arrived in Kyoto, we had all assumed we would just be able to have a nice little stroll around and see all the temples. It is actually a pretty big city and walking was definitely not an option, especially as the rain had not stopped. We got on a bus (luckily it had a TV screen in the front with the name of each stop in English!) and made our way to the Kinkaku-ji Temple, also called the Golden Temple.

ImageImageThe temple was beautiful, such a shame about the rain as I’m sure sunlight reflecting off it would look lovely!

ImageImageImageImageImageDespite the rain we had a lovely stroll around the grounds. We decided not to go and visit any other temples this time, so I’ll have to make sure I get another flight to Osaka!

I also got my roster for April while I was away, and this month I only have one new destination. I have leave at the beginning of the month (11 days, yay!) and then I’ll be going to:

  • Bangkok (going to try and go to the tiger temple if I have time)
  • Bangalore turnaround
  • Chennai turnaround
  • Kuala Lumpur
  • Bombay turnaround
  • Perth (again?!)
  • Durban (my one new destination!)

I don’t count turnarounds as new destinations, as we don’t actually get off the plane. I didn’t bid for anything as I’m at the bottom in bidding seniority this month, so I’ll have to try and see if I can swap some of my flights and go somewhere new. My leave starts in 2 days and I still haven’t decided where I’m going to go yet! I’m contemplating the idea of going to Alberquerque to visit Lizzie (my sister) which would mean trying to get on a flight to America, my best bets are probably Houston or Dallas, and then get a connecting flight. If I do that then I’ll try and stop off in Austria on the way home to see my friends and family. Got to get my lovely Lahore turnaround out of the way first and then I’ll officially be off for 11 days! I’ll keep you updated as to where I go on my leave 🙂

I’d also like to apologise about the dreadful quality of the pictures; even though I charged my camera overnight, when we arrived in Kyoto it refused to turn on, so I had to use my iPhone. I’m hoping it’s just a glitch and that it’s not broken 🙁

 

P.s. If you want more regular day to day updates of what is happening in my life, follow me on Twitter and Instagram @rachelwwilson!

Taipei 101!

 

My most recent trip took me to Taipei. After a 7 hour flight and a looooong bus ride, we finally arrived at our hotel. A group of us arranged to meet for dinner in the hotel (50% off the buffet, yes please!) and had a delicious dinner trying all the local food (as well as some pasta and pizza of course!). The best dish was by far the sashimi, so fresh and delicious. We had a couple of drinks in the bar then headed up to bed to get a good nights sleep, ready to do some exploring the next day. 

Bright and early (well, does 9:30 count as early? I think it does) four of us met in the lobby. Whilst on the flight a crew member travelling as a passenger had given us a few tips of places to go and we’d decided to start by going to a shopping area/market that she’d recommended. What she forgot to mention (along with the concierge who explained how to get there) was that it didn’t open until the evening! So that left us a little stumped and we carried on walking around that area until we saw some signs for a temple. 

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We spotted the temple from afar and walked over. It’s called the Ciyou Temple and was built in 1753, and has an impressive 6 stories. While we were walking around inside a very sweet Taiwanese man came over to us and explained a little bit about the temple as well as showing us around some of the different areas.

ImageImageImageImageImageImageWe weren’t completely sure what they meant, but throwing down these two wooden semicircle shapes was (I think) supposed to be some kind of symbol of good luck. One had to land one way up and the other one in the other direction, so it took a few tries before they were the right way!ImageAfter the temple we walked behind to see the Rainbow Bridge which is on the Keelung River. It wasn’t particularly special by day, but I’ve just read that at night it lights up makes a rainbow reflect onto the water.

ImageImageAs you can see it was pretty windy!ImageImageWe were all feeling a little peckish after lots of walking, so decided to head over to the Taipei 101 Tower and have some lunch there. There’s a shopping mall connected to the tower, and we found a place serving teppanyaki. It was my first time trying it and I’m definitely sold! You order a type of meat (I went for prawns, fish and pork) and they cook it on a huge metal hot plate in front of you. As well as the meat you get a bowl of soup, rice, and veggies to go with it. They pile it onto your plate as it’s ready! I did try and use the chopsticks but in the end we all gave up and had to ask for a knife and fork!ImageImageImageUnfortunately we didn’t end up going to the top of the tower which I would have liked to have done, because two of the others didn’t want to pay! (Boring!)

ImageImageAnother love sign outside the tower, I wonder if these were left over from Valentine’s day or if they are always there?ImageIf I get a chance to go back to Taipei I’ll definitely be going up the tower. Anybody who has read my blog before will see that somehow I almost always end up going up some kind of tower in all the places I’m in, I love having a great view of the city!

 

P.s. If you want more regular day to day updates of what is happening in my life, follow me on Twitter and Instagram @rachelwwilson!

 

March roster!

Just a short and sweet blog post today with a little update on my roster for March. I was supposed to be going on another trip to São Paulo at the end of February but unfortunately fell ill and fainted in the briefing room so that didn’t happen! Very disappointed as I’m losing out on a lot of flying hours and also missing the Brazilian carnival!

Somehow though I managed to skip my “reserve” month in March and got a nice roster with only one turnaround. So I’ll be heading to:

  • London Heathrow
  • Manila
  • Taipei
  • Perth
  • Osaka
  • Lahore (t/a)

Most people hate London flights as they are always so busy, but I like it as it means a chance to go to Primark (always needing more tights for work!) and also have a good stock up on English food at the supermarket!

I’m also very excited to have 3 new places – Manila, Taipei and Osaka magnets shall soon be added to the fridge! I originally had a Paris instead of the Osaka but when somebody sent me the swap I thought I may as well take it. Hopefully I’ll be there for the cherry blossoms although I think it may be a week or two early.

So that’s my roster for March! I’ve got some leave at the beginning of April and I’m trying to find somewhere nice (and not too far to fly) Joey and I could go for a few days – any suggestions would be appreciated!

 

P.s. If you want more regular day to day updates of what is happening in my life, follow me on Twitter and Instagram @rachelwwilson!