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Ersten Tag in Koeln

 Jesse James ‘08 - Hello, Wabash!!  We made it safely to Cologne this morning at (TOA) 8:00am local time…we’re 6 hours ahead of all y’all, so that made it 2:00am home time.

Today, we were all zonked but we still went to the “Roemish-Germanischem Museum”…Roman-German Museum. It was fantastic! The museum houses collections of art and livingware of the region during Roman control. The craftsmanship was exquisite and rather impressive. At the main entrance lay a tiled floor from a house in which a wealthy family lived; the mosaic was of Dionysus and colored the floor of a “celebration room” (where the owner hosted guests).

Elsewhere, the museum has collections of everyday objects used by Romans of the day: combs, knives, jewelry, locks, keys, glassware, tombstones, sarcophaguses, shoes, cloths, and many other remnants. Being in the presence of so many objects, to which give the most realistic insight into the lives of “Roemer” circa the time period, left me the last to leave each section!  I didn’t want to leave! But, I better stop before I transform this entire blog into a history lesson!  I’m doing work within my major on German history, but as much as my history professors would love me to elaborate on my findings at the museum I will stop for the sake of the not-so-history buff.

Cologne itself is a fantastic city; and we’ve only been here for just over 12 hours. Our hotel – Brandenburgstrassehof – is close to the gem of the city, the “Koelner Dom.” We’re visiting this cathedral later this week, so keep an eye out for text and photos about it. Other than that, the weather is so-so; overcast and sporadically rainy with temps the equivalent of 49 degrees Fahrenheit. The wind picked up significantly just after lunch (which felt like dinner after all the traveling!) when the group split off to tour the area.

Aaron Bonar ’10 and I wanted to visit the area so we went around to the small shops and walked along the Rhein. He’s a Russian culture enthusiast and we happened to stumble into a shop devoted to Russian art and artisanship, so that was off the hook.  We walked just far enough to make it a challenging trudge back to the hotel…especially with what blew like 40 mph winds!!!!   We made it, and I got a “Bundesliga, Fussball” (National Soccer League) scarf out of the voyage and Aaron got an umbrella which is now shoved into a trash can near the trainstation; apparently, it was made for rain and not blow-you-backwards wind gusts!!!

Bis Bald

Jess

p.s. For those who followed my quaint little weblog in Mexico City back in November: The altitude is fine and the salt content is on par. Ha Ha. 

Photo: Professor Redding explains the monument (background) to Michael Vick '10