Not Amsterdam. It's Düsseldorf.

The lady and I got into Essen with flexible plans. They looked much like this:

  • Visit friends
  • Visit Düsseldorf
  • Find sushi
  • Visit Ochtrup* 
The first step was in progress by Friday so we started in on the second. That's the easy part - it's just a short train ride from Essen. The third may seem surprising if you're unaware of Düsseldorf's large Japanese population and selection of all-you-can-eat sushi places. They're high-quality and quite inexpensive. They're also quite popular as our first choice was far too busy to ever have a table ready. Luckily, there was a great alternative not far away (the rain had finally caught up with us, so we didn't feel like searching for long). It's an atmospheric, classically German city, especially if you don't mind Nordrhein-Westphalia serving as the representative of the whole country.

In Essen, waiting for the right train.
In Düsseldorf. You can tell because they sell gazpacho in bottles (don't believe me about that - it's a novel thing to do in most places).
There's that rain again.
"What's Beef Burgers". There isn't a question mark so I don't think it's interrogative.

This building may be competing with Philadelphia's Comcast Center for the title of Most Sinister-Looking Tower.

We made it to the Rhein and had some Spaghetti-Eis (not shown, but it looks like this).
The trees by the river had managed to survive all the recent volatile weather.
The Oberkasseler Brücke. It's technically the oldest bridge in the city if you ignore how it was rebuilt in the 1970's.
Looking out at the river to see where it's going today.
Back to Essen and to this wonderful place. 
Next time: To Ochtrup.

*What's an Ochtrup, you ask? It's a small town. It's right here. They make ceramic whistles there called "nightingales". They don't look like birds but they sound like them (the ceramics, not the people of Ochtrup).