So this happened a few weeks ago!! My parents have been visiting!! It's been wonderful but I have gotten seriously behind on posting and if I don't catch up before we go to England I probably never will! In planning for my parents arrival, they needed to decide where and what they wanted to see. We knew we would have some days with Chopper and some without and unfortunately I'm still somewhat limited in my comfort level of where I'll drive without him. He is a really fabulous driver in situations where we don't know where we are and things are different. I get so anxious about it! One of the places that came up on my parents' list was Nuremberg and we haven't been there yet even though its only about 45 minutes away! It was on our list for a day when Chopper wouldn't be able to come so we took a Saturday to check it out.
We decided to ride the train. Believe it or not we had not ridden a train yet!! The kids, especially William, were so excited and they enjoyed the ride although they asked for food the whole time. They ask for food the whole time when we go anywhere though.
The Bahnhof (train station) in Nuremberg is huge but also very close to the downtown areas that we wanted to explore so it was just a short walk. This Saturday was also one of two weekends where they do a city-wide flea market (flohmarkt) so it was really busy and there were people with their tables set up everywhere. We didn't find anything we particularly had to have though.
As we're wandering, the clouds close in and the rain begins and we were completely unprepared! So we're trying to keep under store overhangs and awnings and Chopper says we might as well find a place to eat. We stop at a Döner shop and had amazing food! They had beef as well as chicken and their bread was fresh and homemade. I had a Döner platter to share with the kids where they put the meat and sauce on french fries and then the salad is on the side. The kids really liked it that way rather than as a sandwich. We also had some of their baklava that was fantastic! While we're sitting there, one of Chopper's coworkers shows up! After we're done, the rain has cleared up so he walks us down to the market square (Hauptmarkt) and then abandons us to our devices. In the square there was a farmer's market going and we did our usual wander around and inside churches thing.
Look at that sky!!! You would never think that in about 30 minutes we would be running for cover!
Church bells and stained glass are my favorites! Also this is part of St. Lawrence church -- not cathedral. It's not the size of the church that matters but the rank of the church official.
Beautiful Fountain -- literally. There's a whole lot of allegory in the figures on this fountain. The only thing we knew about was that if you spin the gold ring three times you get good luck or a wish granted or something. I can't ever keep them straight.
But we spun!
I can't remember what this church was -- one more reason why I need to blog RIGHT after we do something!! But the kid's favorite part was this crypt container thing because it rested on the backs of snails! They loved snails. I tried to find out WHY snails but all I could find was that this was the masterwork of some guy and not why he made it this way. Someday I will find him and ask him.
Nuremberg was bombed pretty heavily and so the church had lots of signs up showing the extent of the damage. It's so sad to see these places destroyed and I'm really glad that they've been considered important enough to restore.
Wall memorial to plague victims
Albrecht Durer was a painter of the German renaissance and was born in Nuremberg and so he has a statue and his house is still there.
Finally, we went up the hill (literally) and discovered the Imperial Castle with a lovely garden that had fantastic views and was also almost entirely people free -- oh and had a bathroom. Bathrooms in Europe that don't cost anything and don't have a line are a treasure! We did not take a tour of the inside although we probably should have because while we were there we got rained on again. We took shelter under a tree until lightening came pretty close and then found somewhere a little safer!
That's a balloon string. Stupid balloons.
See the clouds coming in! Crazy!
Now we're waiting out the rain.
Street performers. We've seen quite a few of these where they look like they're floating. Chopper says there's a metal something or other holding them up but it must still be tiring!
We had an ok day. I think most of my posts are about how great everything is so here's reality. Nuremberg wasn't our favorite city although there are things we want to go back and see that we missed or didn't see much of. But it was kind've one of those days where keeping track of the kids was like herding cats. We had a Unicef guy hand them balloons which I thought would be great for watching them but instead it made them focus on the balloons and not on where we were going or who was around us. I was constantly looking for children or grabbing them by the shoulders and either moving them out of someone's way or closer to us. We had a hard time on this trip finding clean bathrooms when we needed them (and it seemed to be a lot) and it was just so busy! Many European cities are of course but something was just off. I recommended we visit some other places with my parents but perhaps we didn't do it justice and we'll have to try again!