Typically law graduates wait until after they take the bar exam to take a bar trip, but when you’ve got a chance to hop a plane to Bayern for a week to watch the world championships of Bavarian folk dance, you make an exception.

Jakob and I spent a week in the Allgaeu region of Bavaria with about 100 other people from the North American organization for Bavarian culture, called Gauverband Nordamerika. Nordamerika was hosting the world championships (called the Bayerischer Loewe, or Bavarian Lion), which was co-hosted by the Allgaeuer Gau in tandem with their own Gaufest. It was an unreal experience. 

We did our fair share of sightseeing, at Nebelhorn (above) and Schloss Nympenburg (below). Tip if you’re going to Nebelhorn: the gondola ride is pretty pricey, but worth buying the one all the way to the top.

We stayed in Durach, a town near Kempten, and the Gaufest/Loewe were held in Haldenwang (of which there are two, so if you’re going, keep that in mind). It was gorgeous and small and green and filled with cows, and I not so lowkey want to move there as soon as humanly possible.

We also visited his family in Stuttgart and Niederbayern at the tail end of our trip, and all of it left me feeling like maybe I should cancel my return flight in favor of never coming home ever again. The pace of life is just very different there, and after three years of law school and the beginnings of bar exam preparation, it was easy to start thinking that maybe we Americans have this whole work-life mashup wrong. Taking time to stop and wonder at the beauty around you wasn’t just a momentary thing there but a whole attitude about how to live your life. It was a perspective shift for me, and something I needed reminding of.

It was truly a dream trip, and we’ll be back (permanently? Maybe? Stay tuned.).

Talk to me.

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