Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Gingerbread

Today, our excellent tour guide Ingo was able to put Nuremberg’s grim associations into context.


For an hour we were taken by coach around various sites associated with the 3rd Reich – the stadia and some of the administrative buildings – and learned of their original purpose, how specifics of their design were intended to further that purpose, and how contemporary use occasionally, and quite deliberately, contradicts it. For example, one of the Nazis' establishments now houses a government department looking after the alien and the stranger!

We passed the buildings which hosted the Nuremberg trials after the war. It transpires that the reason they were held here was that Nuremberg was about the only place in Germany, not under Russian control, that still had a serviceable and secure prison. The link to the Nazi use of Nuremberg was a felicitous but incidental symbolism.

It was hard to capture a photographic record of this part of our tour through the coach windows, but the memory will live long. When it came to an end, Ingo took us on a walk from the castle down to the market square.



The defences of Nuremberg – the castle and the city walls – seem to have been pretty impregnable under mediaeval conditions. By the time they were rendered obsolete by more modern forms of warfare, the city could not afford to demolish them, so they are still here to tell the tale.



Walking down to the city centre we found the usual architectural mix, represented by the solid City Hall on one side…


and the soaring cathedral on the other.


Once again, we were encountering a city that had seen 90% destruction in WWII. Most of what we saw was reconstruction, though it was usually hard to tell.


There’s a wonderful fountain in the square, fed by pipes from a nearby but uninhabited region. Unfortunately, the pipes had been made of lead, so the populace was subjected to chemical rather than bacterial poisoning! Ingo gave us some stats on beer consumption in earlier times – 3 litres a day on average: and that’s an average which includes the babes in arms! But beer was far safer than water.


We found ourselves exploring one of the mediaeval quarters, where half-timbered buildings overlook the river.


As important as the view was the coffee and the local delicacy Lebkuchen – gingerbread. We found a great café…


 and the best Lebkuchen shop in Nuremberg, side by side.


It was delicious!

2 comments:

  1. Simply wow! It all looks amazing- those Germans look like they need a window cleaner tho! I'm on my way! 😀

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    1. It's certainly been stunning, Paul. And the windows are indeed a pleasure to behold!

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