In favour of spontaneity and exploring a cute town
I’ve mostly lived my life planning things out. I have a zillion to-do lists – some on paper, some on my devices and some just in my head. But I mostly like having an idea about things that I have to do and hence have some control over my day. So when even mundane things in my everyday existence are mostly planned, trips are definitely planned with more attention. But then one morning, I woke up and decided to complete my morning routine and then just go to the central train station in my city and take any train that goes out first from there. I surprised myself on how I’d decided to ditch planning in favour of spontaneity.
I have always longed to visit different places, stay there and explore what the place has to offer. But I only started actually traveling after I turned 25. Most of the trips that I have taken are the ones that are planned days if not weeks ahead, with estimated schedules in place. There is always room for spontaneity but then the days have a general plan to go by.
But the last few days of December and the first few days of January this time for me have been ones without a sense of routine. I think it was the first time ever that I was forced to take a vacation, but I didn’t have any plans thanks to a lot of different things. So I took things one day at a time.
I visited friends staying in other cities here, tried bouldering and climbing, cleaned and rearranged my closet and my kitchen shelves and took way too many long walks when the weather permitted. But then one day I wanted to something different and that’s how I found myself at the train station without a plan.
The first train out of the train station was to Tübingen. Now Tübingen is a place that I often see mentioned in lists of cute towns in Germany to visit. But though it is just two hours away by train from where I live, I hadn’t visited this place. A few plans were made months ago to visit this town but were cancelled for various reasons. So this was serendipity at play and I was finally going to Tübingen!
Tübingen is a university town in the south western state of Baden-Württemberg in Germany. Since it has a lot of student population, it is called the city with the youngest population. The city is best known for its colourful houses and charming streets.
Once I arrived in Tübingen, I just followed the crowd and that lead me to one of the bridges across the river Neckar for the view that the town is known for. I enjoy walking by rivers and lakes and I’ve been doing it a lot more these days. So walked along taking in the colourful buildings, the trees bereft of foliage yet standing like sentinels guarding the city and the rare winter sun that made things better. I walked along the streets taking in the charm of the old buildings and always thinking about the stories that they have to tell. The Rathaus or the Town Hall also is an interesting building!
I then followed the signs on the streets that lead me to Hohentübingen Castle. Situated atop the Spitzberg hill, the way to the castle was a slightly tiring but an interesting walk. The views of the town from atop the castle made it worth the climb. There were quite a few interesting things at the castle which now functions as a museum. I found out that DNA was first discovered right there! Also there is a 200 year old observatory which is the only ground observatory! Interesting, isn’t it? There was also a small seating area right outside the castle and I decided to sit there and just read for sometime. It was such a nice feeling to sit by a castle overlooking the town and enjoy the sunshine!
After taking the sights of the castle, I headed down to find something to eat because all the walking and climbing had made me hungry. I found a Cafe and ate a nice late lunch. After which I walked along in search of some bookstores and the botanical gardens. I found a few bookstores but I didn’t find English books. So headed out to the gardens and spent some time walking along.
If you have known me for any length of time now, you would know that I absolutely love sunsets. So I was wondering where to find a perfect sunset spot and then I came across a sign for “Osterburg” and I Googled to find out what it was and it turned out to be a lovely spot to catch the sunset. So I set off walking and climbing again to make it there before sunset. There weren’t a lot of people around and it was so peaceful to sit there and just gaze into the horizon and take the surroundings. The sunset was lovely too!
So yes, spontaneity did work out for me. It is helping me follow my guiding phrase for this year which is to “Go with the Flow“. I ended up having an amazing day, learning a lot from the surroundings and also from trying to go outside my comfort zone. I did do something slightly similar a few months ago. But then I had a destination in mind -maybe that’s a story for another day?
I’ve been trying to do a lot of things that I’d never done before. I think one leads to another. Or maybe the experience motivates me to try to get outside my comfort zone more often! I’m glad that I trying to be more independent and I’m exploring places on my own. Here’s to being more spontaneous and haivng more adventures!
What is the most spontaneous decision that you last made?
PS: My daily adventures and mishaps are mostly documented on my Instagram.
What a beautiful post, Reema. Thank you for introducing Tubingen to us. Love the colorful houses and their reflection. And that sunset is gorgeous. I love sunsets, too. Definitely, going with the flow is working for you well, Reema. Hoping to read and see more in this space.
This looks so beautiful! Going with the flow is the best approach to life at times.
Tubinger is so pretty. It reminds me of Venice. They had similar houses in one of the islands.
Loved seeing Tubingen through your lens, Reema! Spontaneity is sometimes the best approach to life, me thinks!
Such a cool idea – taking the first train out to wherever it goes! Spontaneity is fun. Tübingen looks really pretty.