The first time I saw Tübingen was during a lazy autumn day in the year 2000. I had freshly moved to Germany and was barely speaking German. In order to learn, I was attending language school at the local Volkshochschule in an industrial town in the southwest called Böblingen, where I met a Spanish guy.
One weekend this guy invited me to a short trip to this interestingly sounding town of Tübingen. I said yes.
I was surprised that the trip by car only took us about half an hour. I had no expectations whatsoever. I imagined that it would be like Böblingen, which was an okay town, but in my opinion not very special.
I always heard people say that the best things come to us when we have no expectations. Tübingen proved this saying right.
I will never forget the feeling that overcame me the very first time I set eyes on this uniquely beautiful town. I felt like I had been displaced in time and space: I was suddenly surrounded by houses built in the 16th century, walking on cobblestoned narrow streets that lead from a majestic marketplace to a beautiful sycamore island surrounded by the calm waters of the river Neckar. I was enchanted. I had never seen anything like it before and I was like Alice in Wonderland releasing constant wows from my lips.
On that very first trip, I had never imagined that one day this town would become my home. Even now, over twenty years of living here, I still feel joy when I walk the streets of Tübingen and I realize that I live in a town that other people travel long ways to visit.