Sunday, June 29, 2014

Post 8 the weekend!

This is a combined Saturday and Sunday post.  I can't believe we've been in Germany a week.   On Saturday, we woke up and were guided through the city's shopping areas and finally hitting the cathedral.  We were greeted by a tourism guide.  She was a very good speaker and had lived in the United States and Canada when she was younger.  However, she started by explaining the different features of the exterior of the cathedral and some of interior.  We went around to the side of the building and then approached different buildings along the river.  Cologne had been 90 percent destroyed in The War with minor damage to the cathedral.  We then went to the river and looked at some historical looking buildings that were built since the 1950s.  We encountered a wedding taking place at the historical City Hall and there are Roman ruins being prepared for exhibition.  Cologne is one of the oldest Roman cities and remains have been found since the rebuilding of the War.
We made our way back to the Cathedral.  I attended noon prayer with a few others in the group, then did a tour of the building.  We then ventured to climb 533 steps of the south tower,  the only warning there was was a sign stating there was no lift.  There should have been plenty others such as if you suffer fro vertigo or heart diseases, don't do this!  I went up and almost immediately felt how difficult it was to be.  There were tight spiral stairs with people going up and down at the same time.  If someone stops, everyone stops.  I did stop a couple of times in areas where there were doorways.  It was very stressful. Then I encountered the bell chamber and went around them.  Then I went further up the tower.  I almost didn't finish it, but I had the urging of others in the group.  I went to the top and worked my way back down.  It is said that 20,000 people take those steps everyday!
We had to meet the others and there was a downpour.  We waited a few minutes and then bolted to the underground train where we took a train a couple of stops to a local Biergarten that our guide usually goes to.  We sampled all kinds of dishes but my main dish was weinerschnitzel.  I then walked back to the hotel to rest.  I went out later to walk and went to an electronics store and went back to the cathedral.
On Sunday, three if us went to 9:00 mass at the cathedral.  It was held in a side chapel.  Interesting in German and the first time I left a mass bruised from the furnishings.  We then packed up and greeted our guides for the past week and said goodbye.  We took a three hour bus rude to Geisa with a food stop along the way.  I paid 70 cents to use the restroom but got a 50 cent voucher for food in the cafeteria.  I had a brat with fried potatoes.  We got to Geisa after the driver got lost a couple of times.  We were greeted by our new guides from Berlin.  We are staying in a former castle that has been renovated into Point Alpha Academy and guest houses.  Opened in 2011, these rooms are gorgeous and the whole town is picturesque.  I don't know how these small towns can do that!

No comments:

Post a Comment