Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Germany Day 2

As going to the Christmas Market in Wetzlar had not worked out as we had planned, I was very excited to go to Marburg. In addition to this, I have a very good friend who spent a year at the University of Marburg so I wanted to see what he saw while he lived there.

After another large and beautifully prepared breakfast, we went to the Lollar train station, which is nothing more than a stop on the way to bigger and better places. It only had an automated ticket machine which was the first obstacle we had to pass. I had my friend translate the screens for me but after seeing how it worked (put in number for the station that you are going to and then put in the number of persons then pay), it was pretty straight-forward. Luckily, we had arrived just in time to catch the train.

The first thing that struck me when we found a seat was how quiet the train was. All trains in Germany run on electricity. In Scotland, they are all diesel engines. The next thing that I noticed was how clean the train was. Sometimes in the UK, you can tell that they cleaned it but not to the level of this particular train (InterCity Expresses (ICE) tend to be as clean as UK trains). The ride from Lollar to Marburg was very nice.

Once we got off the train and out into the street, I was not exactly impressed with the buildings. Near the train station, Marburg looks just like any other modern city. You must make your way past St. Elizabeth's Cathedral and up the hill into the old town before you really start to see what makes Marburg special.

The largest part of the Christmas Market was in the square in front of the town hall. There we stopped for a mulled wine and a pork steak in a bun before we went up to the castle. We wandered around the castle but because it was getting late in the day, we decided not to go inside. I really wanted to go back down for more mulled wine. Honestly, I was all about the mulled wine.

We had a mulled wine back in the square and the place had filled to the brim with people. Most of them gathered around the mulled wine booth as did we. There is something quite magical about Marburg's old town. It would have been better if there had been some snow on the ground but, as we all know, global warming has taken care of that for us. While I was sipping, I was looking at the half-timber buildings. The funny things was is that one of the buildings had each level slightly larger than the last. The windows on this building were perfectly straight with each other until you reached the third floor when the fourth floor window was so tilted that it made the entire structure look funny. It was quite amusing.

After relaxing in the Christmas Market with our drinks, we went back down to the train station. Again, we had to navigate the ticket machine and then catch our train. We were oh so sad because we had to go back to the fantastic food that we knew awaited us when we returned.

posted by Chris  #1:11 PM | 0 comments |