Monday, December 17, 2007

A random slide in the middle of our neighborhood

Joe and I saw this slide in August and it was completely covered in prickly vegetation. I'd been dreaming of showing up with a hacksaw to clear this wondrous slide for my own pleasure. It is located in a small playground near a local jail which we attribute to its former state of disrepair. I decided we needed to hop the fence and check it out, even though the stairs to the top are under construction. The best part about this playground is that there are no kids getting in the way.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Here's a guy in the Christmas Market grilling some wurst (sausage). If you thought the sausage fanaticism was a're wrong. You see people eating and selling sausage of every kind everywhere.

We were walking down to the Kornmarkt in a hurry and I made Joe stop for a picture :)

Heidelberg Weihnachtsmarkt

Outdoor ice skating rink down the street from us (I wish my cousins could be here!)

Heidelberg Weihnachtsmarkt

Me and my cherry Gluehwein!

Heidelberg Weihnachtsmarkt

This is a shot of a bakery stand set up in Bismarckplatz for the Weihnachtsmarkt (Christmas Market). So far I've tried a ginger bread cookie and Joe and I tried two Schaumkuessen, which are marshmallow fluff dipped in chocolate and then you can request a flavor of chocolate on it too! We tried rum (rum) and cinnamon (zimt). I highly recommend both.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Cologne, Germany

On Sunday, November 25th, we saw Cologne! Cologne is an historic city built on Roman ruins. It was the northernmost outpost of the Roman Empire. There is a huge modern museum called the Römisch-Germanisches Museum (Roman-German) that houses some of the artifacts found in the city.

We left at about 9:30am on Sunday and went with Matt, Tyler, and Erica. Cologne is known for their beautiful cathedral, and it is hard to miss as it dominates the city's skyline. We went in and there was a mass going, but we could still watch from the vestibule. We had the opportunity to climb to the very top of one of the spires, which was 157m from start to finish and was comprised of 500 steps! There was a very small winding staircase and at times there were no windows, so we could see a beautiful view of the entire city and feel the wind at the top of the spire! Unfortunately the only person with a camera was afraid of heights and claustrophobic, so we don't have pictures of this view. Here is a shot of the Cologne Cathedral I found:

We hung around the city for the day, getting Doeners (lamb,lettuce, tomato, carrot, yogurt sauce, spicy sauce in a pita) and coffee to escape the rain.

Finally it was time for the show we came to see! The New Pornographers were on tour for their new album, Challengers, and this was their only stop in Germany. I had seen the band once in Toronto and it was a completely packed show with thousands of people, and A.C. Newman (the lead singer) played a solo show at Intonation 2005 in Chicago with thousands of people too! It was amazing to see them up close and personal. Joe and I were right at the stage for the whole show and it was pretty amazing. After the show, the drummer came out to talk to people and Erica got a picture of me with him, so I will continue hounding her for her pictures of the show.

Cologne is a pretty great city. I would like to go back in better weather to walk around, see the museums and art galleries, and of course I will have to see the Chocolate Museum down by the Rhine! Apparently they have a huge chocolate fountain of really great German chocolate that you can try :)