Monday, June 28, 2010

Another beautiful day in Cologne

High of 90 today... A far cry from a high of 60 last week!!

Meetings all day...

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Beautiful day in Zuid-Limburg

In Heerlen having lunch in an outdoor cafe, listening to a jazzy-Sting
style performer who is quite good. Temps in the 80s and lots of shoppers

Today they have an art and architecture celebration in Heerlen and then a
street festival with live music in Ubach over Worms starting at 5pm.

Plan on heading to the hotel, Kasteel Doenrade, after lunch 4ish. Will do
some bike riding tomorrow morning before heading out to Dusseldorf to visit
my friends Monique and Ben, then back to Cologne late Sunday.

Wish Andrew was with me, but otherwise...

Life is great!


Friday, June 25, 2010

Michael Jackson shrine in Cologne

Truly strange.

Strolling Cologne having a kolsch

Just adjacent to the river. The river boats are full of tourists and are
playing 'Centerdold' by the J Geils Band, now Simply Red... Of course!
Weather partly cloudy and maybe 75. Just got a haircut. Finally feeling
better after a week with bronchitis.

Ahhhh... Summer in Germany!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Getting ready for World Cup in Cologne

Houses all decorated and people with flags and face paint going to the
Deutz 'hood behind the hotel to watch Germany an hour from now. Sadly I am
still sick so likely just to watch from hotel...

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

View of Cologne at night

Beautiful views from here!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

I caught a cold on Lufthansa and I've been sick since I arrived - today no better. But I had to get out a bit or I'd go crazy, so I walked across the bridge from the Hyatt to the city. After 2 minutes I realized my camera battery died, weather turned cloudy and cold, so I left myself with doing museums and will do the sightseeing later - other than the obligatory photo and buying souvenirs for friends and family back home (yes, they DO have snowglobes and thimbles here...)
Then... off to the a museum I found about on-line and what a treat! I went to the NS-Dokumentationszentrum der Stadt Koln, which is in the EL-DE Building and was the headquarters of the Gestapo (Nazi state police) from 1935-45. Not only were thousands of people detained and tortured here, but several hundred were executed in the inner courtyard during the last months of the war, particularly foreigners condemned to forced labor.
What I loved was that after the war, the building was turned into municipal use and the downstairs jail and dungeon untouched; when it was rediscovered in the 1970s and subsequently turned into a museum in 1981 they had a largely intact jail. Over 1,800 carvings and writings from prisoners still exist and detail their experiences - difficult. Upstairs is the Cologne Documentation Centre on National Socialism which talked about the rise of Naziism in Cologne and its effects on the population.
I've got some photos of this below; there were 13 cells, each about 4 ft wide by 14 ft long, and housed up to 30 people! The only toilets were a bucket in each cell; they had showers and flush toilets in a general area between two sets of cells.

Photos, Left to Right: Exterior of Gestapo Prison, Cells in the Prison, Preserved carvings in Russian

Friday, June 18, 2010

In Cologne

A partly cloudy day... Weather has definitely chilled down. The view
overlooks the city and the famous cathedral.

Unfortunately I caught a cold on the flight in so recovering...

And here I am in Germany watching the world cup in a beergarden and they
are losing to Serbia 0-1. They are passionately upset...

@ Biergarten in Cologne watching World Cup

Germany vs Serbia

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Arrival to Frankfurt Rail Station

Very confusing and I give Lufthansa a 1 out of 10 for explaining where to
go and how to do this. There are 3 train stations at the airport all in
the same area and my rush hour arrival meant long lines and little help.
But... I finally figured it out and will be in Cologne in an hour!
Definitely need a good shower and a cup of coffee...