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Harold and Kumar Go To Trier

Matt Vast '08

     Yesterday at our farewell dinner Dr. Redding asked about our favorite experience from the week.  I had a very difficult time picking only one because nearly everything we visited was incredible.  Never before have I spent an entire week with such little sleep and enjoyed every single minute of my time.  However, I decided that my trip to Trier, approximately two and a half hours from Cologne by train, surpassed any other experience that I had over the course of the week. 

     Ian Scales (’10) and I left from the main train station in Cologne around nine’ o’clock Thursday morning.  We headed south for approximately 70 miles and arrived in Trier just before noon.  First we headed just down the road from the train station to Porta Nigra, an old Roman city gate.  Then we moved into the Altstadt, the oldest part of the city, and viewed some of the architecture and restaurants there, as well as visiting several stores in the shopping district.  We then made our way to the southern part of the city, where we visited the birth house of Karl Marx.  The entire house was filled with extremely intriguing information, and we easily could have stayed there for several hours; however, we had much more to see. 

     We headed across town and visited Constantine Basilica.  This church was originally commissioned as Constantine’s throne hall, and then used as a Catholic church.  However, today the church is used as a Protestant Church, and it was the only church we visited the entire time that was Protestant.  That fact allowed me to have a somewhat more personal connection with the religious significance than I experienced at the Catholic cathedrals.  The building sustained extensive war damage in World War II, and the displays detailing the extensive rebuilding period were incredibly fascinating.  

     We then headed back around the city to several wine houses where we sampled some excellent German wines.  Trier lies right along the Mosel River, in the region of the country considered wine country because of extensive wineries along the banks of the river.  Sitting on the street completely immersed in the German culture with a glass of wine was my favorite experience from the entire trip.  As it started to get late, we headed out on the train for Koblenz, where we stopped briefly in the station and ate before returning to Cologne.  The whole day was incredible, and the experiences from both that day and the entire week will be with me for the rest of my life.

In Photo: Hauptbahnhof Koeln, "Cologne Train Station"