Today’s Daily Create focused on the “ugly underside” to a happy place. What is your happy place, and what dark secret looms behind its cheery face?

‘Like an evil twin or a twisted pair, happy places can have an ugly underside’. Is your happy place always happy? What is its underside. An example of Disneyland as a happy place with an underside might offer inspiration. HT @kd0602 for today’s prompt. Write your story in a blog post.

 

A happy place doesn’t necessarily always have to be happy. It can be a place where you find comfort, where you can go to think, to get away from the everyday routine, and most of all, to feel a connection to that place in some way.  My happy place happens to be Erfurt, Germany.

When I studied abroad during the Spring semester 2014, Erfurt was my home for 6 months.  I fell in love with the city – its small-ish size, its quaint old town, and the people.  When studying abroad, you learn the ins and outs of where you are studying, because you just want to explore and see everything you want to see! Anyone that studies abroad has a major case of FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) when they’re not stateside.

Erfurt has had a rocky past, to say the least.  It was part of old “East” Germany, was bombed multiple times during WWII, and Buchenwald (the 3rd largest concentration camp during WWII) is only 15 minutes away.  Even though Germany is one unified country, there is still a noticeable difference between the “East” and “West” economically, socially, and architecturally.  Erfurt and other eastern cities still have that stigma hanging over them, because they are in the “East”.  Although some “Wessis” (Westerners) still look down on the “Ossis” (Easterners), it didn’t bother me and I actually found the simpler lifestyle of the East more relaxing and calming.

Like any other city, Erfurt has its ups and downs, the good times, and the bad. I will love, enjoy, and admire that city in any way I can, no matter what side of her anyone else sees, even if it is overcast 80% of the time!   For me, the city is like a second home, a long lost part of me.  The city stole my heart, and someday, I will return to reclaim it, along with that lost piece of my soul.

Relaxing on the Krämerbrücke