A corset! and a Pianoforte! It was all really beautiful and fascinating.
On one of my free mornings I went to a museum/memorial for WWII victims that was in the basement of a bombed-out church. There was a concentration camp in the outskirts of Hamburg and after it was heavily bombed and large portions of the civilian population lost homes, jobs or their very lives (those who made it to underground bomb shelters survived but the above ground shelters weren't even strong enough to save people from the heat from fires and bombs), the inmates at the camp were ordered to pick through the rubble to collect the dead for burial and make sure all bombs had actually exploded. It was humbling to stand in that city knowing its tragic and violent past.
Nazi Propaganda: "Mother and Child"
All that is left of the church where the memorial now stands is the bell tower and about half of the outside walls. What used to be the church itself is now an outside courtyard with a few statues and memorials. Here are my two favorites:
This one is called "The Ordeal" and had a quote from Dietrich Bonhoeffer (who opposed Hitler) attached to it, "No man in the world can change the truth. One can only look for the truth, find it and serve it. The truth is in all places".
After I went thorough the museum, I noticed that my ticket also gave me access to the bell tower. I hadn't planned on going up (because I'm kind of afraid of heights) but because I had already paid for it, I thought, why not? Now, I know why not. Going up 75 yards of this:
all alone in a glass elevator is NOT fun. In fact, it is small panic-attack producing. Take my word for it.
Of my hotel (the tallest building)...:
Of this McDonald's sign (LAME)...:
and this Emergency Sign, which informed me that in the event of an emergency, I should not worry because I would be able to escape using this spiral staircase which went down the outside of the gigantic bell tower...:
Can you see the TERROR on my face?:
After the War, Hamburg continued to be a place that welcomed excellent artists, particularly musicians. And it wasn't long before the best band of the 20th century came to this humble city. The Beatles (before they were world famous) spent time living in Hamburg's seedy red-light district on the Reeperbahn street (where they used to make ropes for ships), where they played in the "Star Club". Here's a photo of the club. Check out my previous blog for a photo of ME on the street "Big Freedoms" (an excellent name for a street in the red light district...)
Some 40 years after The Beatles first set foot in Hamburg I followed suit and got to work with these lovely Hamburgers:
This is a photo of the German helpers who assisted us in Hamburg. They were WONDERFUL and I'm so glad to have met them!
Well, my friends, that's an overview of my time in Historic Hamburg.
Stay tuned for the article on Beautiful Baden Baden!