After five eventful days, we bid a fond farewell to Athens, and began our day with an early morning flight to our next destination: Frankfurt, Germany’s financial capital and home to the European Central Bank and Bundesbank. To keep our final moments of Athens memorable, our caravan of taxis seemed to take the initiative, making it from our downtown Psyri hotel to the Athens Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport in what must have been record time.
After arriving in Frankfurt, settling in at our hotel, and eating lunch at a local ramen restaurant and a Chipotle (don't judge; we were tired), we spent the afternoon exploring the city. Many of us ventured to the Botanical Gardens of Frankfurt, where we saw an impressive portfolio of greenery. We also visited Geothe-Universitat, where in a city full of national and international banks, plazas were naturally named after Frankfurt School Marxist theorists. Some of us found a unique and exciting form of transport to the gardens and throughout the city, taking advantage of the city’s ample supply of Lime motorized scooters. Towering over the city were the Deutsche Bank Twin Towers, colloquially known as "debit" and "credit."
We ended our first night in Germany by enjoying one of the best features of Europe in December -- the Christmas Market. The Frankfurt Christmas Market in the city's historical square provided us with a delicious assortment of German holiday treats and mulled wine, and we also stocked up on souvenirs to take home to the States.
That evening we prepared for the following day's meeting at the European Central Bank and for conversations with filmmaker Alison Klayman and IMF official Neil Shenai. We are looking forward to the insights we will gain from our time in Germany.