I DD my MT 128i, i'd 100 percent say go MT. This is my first stick car, but i learned how to drive on my dads 335i. Once you learn it you'll be fine, and the 128's very forgiving for learning if you have to learn on it. It's more fun to me personally to drive a manual over having a boring automatic, i look forward to my daily commute now instead of dreading it. My commute is mostly highway, but theres traffic here and there and it's not as dreadful as some try to say. It's 2nd nature for me, i get into my moms auto car and keep reaching for a clutch pedal.
Also the MT is faster on the 128's since its a true automatic not a DCT.