The first year is about everything: first month, first friends, first Christmas, first Saint Nicholas. For me it’s a very important tradition: each year I prepare my boots, clean them and put them at the door. Saint Nicholas is the start of winter, the smell of the first orange I taste, the sweets and the warm feeling of being a kid. A lot changed: I am not a kid anymore and my parents aren’t the ones to continue this crazy tradition. But we celebrate Saint Nicholas each year, even if it doesn’t represent anymore the start of winter. I was convinced that, as usual, we will stay in the house, prepare our boots, hide the sweets and fruits. But one week ago we received an e-mail from NS so on Saturday morning we were on the train to Dusseldorf.
In Romania, in the last years, Christmas markets started to appear. They were shy, with a lot of stupid things to buy. I was reading and reading about the markets from the West so, even if we have in plan a trip to Koln, we decided to visit Dusseldorf too. The old town is studded with small houses in which you can find a lot of Christmas stupid things, but it’s not the diversity I was hoping for. For example, classic globes can be found at only 2 houses. Even if I felt that the offer is limited for Christmas decorations, regarding the food is the other way around: at each corner you can eat sausages (wurst), mushrooms, waffles or cabbage. And of course you can’t miss a cup with hot wine, which is similar with the Romanian one (at home, during cold winter evenings, my parents are boiling 2 litters of red wine with spices). The atmosphere, especially in the evening, was pleasant, with a lot of people going back and forth, drinking wine. In the old town there’s a street full of pubs and the music was loud, which I liked, it reminds me of Bucharest old town: full of people, energy, good feelings, youth.

Beside Christmas madness, Dusseldorf offers a different type of architecture. The houses near the Rhine are so beautiful, making me think about mansions. And near the tower we found another kind of architecture (thank you for the tip, Lumi!): Gehry’s buildings, impressive, waves-like.

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And what it will be Dusseldorf without the birds so used with people? Everywhere seagulls or geese, standing there, just waiting for somebody to feed them. And have you ever seen ducks in trees?