Gadding about Germany
As a young lass of sixteen hubby’s paternal grandmother, Violet King, went to Berlin to extend her musical abilities as a concert violinist. It was pre WW1 and she stayed with a German Count and his family and played in concert before the Kaiser. This was an amazing opportunity for a young Aussie girl of that time and left an indelible imprint on her. When hubby was a child this grandma taught him German by posting German words around the home, speaking to him in German and only conversing when he responded in German. Consequently hubby picked up German quite well and thanks to his grand-mother’s musical ear his pronunciation of the language is authentic. This is borne out as when we travel in German speaking countries people remark that his German is sehr gut (very good). With this history hubby was very excited and quite emotional to be arriving in Berlin.
Almost completely destroyed in WW2, Berlin has re-birthed into a vibrant and dynamic modern city. We arrived at the Berlin Hauptbahnhof Train Station which was opened in 2006. It is unique in Europe as all the intercity express lines and all Berlin’s commuter lines intersect here on different levels. From this station one could go anywhere in Europe. The hauptbahnhof is also home to a multi storey shopping plaza.
As usual we took advantage of the sightseeing bus, this time we took a three day pass and explored much of Berlin. Checkpoint Charlie is the former border crossing between the American and Soviet sectors. It is now an important tourist site explaining the history of the Cold War and the Berlin Wall.
After leaving Berlin we travelled the Nuremberg famous for the Nazi Party Rallies, the Nuremberg Laws and the Nuremberg Trials of top Nazi criminals. The receptionist at the hotel where we stayed told us she took her early morning exercise running up and down the many stairs on the left in this photograph. To get an idea of the hysteria caused by the Nazis in this location view Leni Riefenstahl’s propaganda film The Triumph of the Will made of the 1934 Nuremberg Rally. Still Nuremberg is a beautifully kept, walled, medieval city and has enough history and charm to minimise the dark history of Nazi fever.
PS. Sorry about yesterdays post. It was a mess up but stay with me as tomorrow we visit Henry’s Hampton Court.