team munchkin wrangler’s 2013 european tour dates.

My brother’s 40th birthday is in February, and we’ve been waiting for an opportunity to visit the family again, so we decided to roll two birthday parties and a family get-together into one and go over there, kids and all.

I just booked the tickets, and boy howdy, does it cost a chunk of change to fly two adults and two kids to another continent. We’re flying from Boston to Amsterdam (the most convenient large airport from my brother’s place), with a stopover in Iceland because we’re going by Icelandair, and their 757s don’t quite have the legs for a transatlantic hop. I was hoping for a longer layover so we could maybe do some looking around in Reykjavik on the way, but it’s just an hour-long pit stop to refuel that Viking long-plane, and I’m sure we won’t be able to see more than the inside of the terminal at Keflavik International.

This will be interesting. We haven’t been back to Germany since 2005, when Quinn was ten months old and Lyra was still in the planning stages. Now the kids are seven and five, and they’re old enough to a.) not be a nuisance on the plane, and b.) be aware of the trip and able to remember the event. Quinn is actually turning eight on the day of our arrival, so he’ll get a little birthday party in Germany.

We’ll be in Germany for just a little under two weeks, which should be plenty of time for family business and some sightseeing. I’m planning to take the wife and kids on day trips around the area, and there’s a lot to see within just a few hours of my brother’s place. Amsterdam is only two hours away, so I suspect we’ll go there for a day—I haven’t been to A’dam since at least 1995, and I’m really looking forward to going back there.

My brother has three kids in the five-to-ten bracket. We’re bringing our two. That’s five children of kindergarten-to-fifth-grade age under the same roof for almost two weeks, and a birthday bash thrown into the mix. I’m sure we’ll be just fine, and I know it will be a lot of fun, but you can also bet your caboose that I’ll be taking the maximum allowable quantity of New Hampshire-bought hooch I can get into Europe duty-free.

11 thoughts on “team munchkin wrangler’s 2013 european tour dates.

  1. It’s been a few decades, but when my sisters went to France as part of a high school exchange program, on their way back their plane refueled in Iceland and they bought some very heavy, very beautiful sweaters at the duty-free shop in the Reykjavik airport. So your layover may not be a total waste of your time.

    • Well, the German beer is good, but if you’re more into spirits, there’s no place cheaper than the Live Free Or Die state.

  2. Sounds like a great trip Marko – have fun! Would love to see more of Germany besides the Frankfurt airport while coming in & out of KSA.

  3. BobG “Beer” is the same in either language. As is, “come here.”
    Oddly enough, those were the first words I ever heard in Germany. My family was changing planes in Frankfurt, and while sitting waiting, I heard a mother tell her toddler, “Komm hier.” Until that moment everyone was speaking English that I could hear.

    • Whenever I hear German being spoken, I think I hear enough English-sounding words that I think something is wrong with my brain and I’m just hearing English the wrong way.

      I was fortunate enough to be able to visit Germany while my sister was married to a German working here in the states. The people there are just a whole different kind of friendly. I expected to be at least a little uncomfortable, not knowing the language or culture. Honest-to-deity, however, every German I met wanted to talk in English and/or drink with me (even if they couldn’t speak English, my brother-in-law would translate). I can honestly say they were the nicest people I have ever met in my life (doing everything they could to make me feel welcome), and I’m jealous you’re going Marko.

      • I used to read Old English fairly well (I’m rusty now), and it always sounded closer to German than English, which is not surprising, since Anglo-Saxons were basically Dark Age Germans.

      • About the talking English but my brain was messed up: We were in Austria at my cousins’ house, with some Grand Prix race on TV. My brother left to take a nap (too much beer, I think; he’s the racing buff). I found a channel that broadcast the race with English commentary and my brother came back and sat down really quiet for a while, until my cousin’s friend said something in German. My brother said that for a few minutes he thought he’d woken up understanding German or something!
        Also, once I was in Rome sitting in the hotel with a fever of 102 (I think, it was a bit hard doing the Celsius to Fahrenheit conversion with a fever), watching “The Pirates of Penzance” with Linda Ronstadt and Kevin Kline. The songs were in English, the dialogue dubbed into Italian, which my mind was trying to twist into German. I knew it wasn’t English, so it had to be — German! Like I said, I had a high fever.

  4. About the tickets being expensive. . . I bought tickets for my family on my American Express Card waaaaaay back in 1985, and American Express called to see if it was ok that there was such a big charge on my card.