Thursday, October 23, 2014

Holiday - Germany (Day 6)

We both enjoyed a good night’s sleep at our new home for the next three days - The Holiday Inn Express, Hamburg. Breakfast was continental or continental  - and that suited us fine - although the traffic-light system posted in the lifts for regulating the flow to-and-from breakfast, seemed to have imploded, as it seemed like the whole of the hotel, was having brekky at the same time as us at 8am this morning!!


The View from Room 511 - Not the 9th Wonder of the World!

We’re off to Bremen today, and as every schoolboy knows, the town is home to the story of the Musicians of Bremen, Grimm’s tale of four animals - a dog, a cat, a donkey and a rooster - who play musical instruments, fight off the bad guys (by perching on top of each other), and ultimately become squatters - Germany’s Got Talent ehh!

P1030615
Hamburg Station

The weather was looking decidedly undecided as we left the Hotel, just after 9, and took the short walk to the Underground. Then, after a short wait (and a coffee), we were on the next leg, a sixty-minute train journey from Hamburg to Bremen itself.


Bremen Station

By the time we arrived, it was a lot colder, but we’d anticipated this, and were dressed accordingly, perfectly blending-in with the locals in their duffle-coats, gloves and general winter attire. Then it started to rain a little, but we soldiered on, taking-in as much of the town as possible.

P1030616
Bremen’s most Famous Squatters

P1030619

P1030618
Scenes around the Town

As we arrived into the centre of the town, there was a food market and a mini-fun fair all competing for a small area - it made it very busy, but it was good fun watching the locals go about their business. One of the more popular stalls was the one selling battered potatoes (poor potatoes!) with a choice of dips. The cold temperature made it a perfect purchase - and most of the shoppers felt the same judging by the queue!

P1030625
The Home for Battered Potatoes

P1030624

P1030623

P1030622

P1030621
More Scenes around Bremen

After taking-in most of the main sights, we discovered a couple of side-streets that revealing a much older side of Bremen. Still no sign of the famous acrobatic-animal-foursome, but we did see  and hear a man playing a clarinet accompanied by another on the guitar.

P1030639P1030641

P1030640
Scenes around the side-streets of Bremen

Having explored most of the streets, next stop was the Cathedral. This was busy too, and although very dark inside, based on the differing styles of stained-glass and the varying state of the brickwork, we could see that it had been partly rebuilt.





 
Inside the Cathedral at Bremen

After a quick stop for a light lunch, we took a final look round the town (just as the sun came out!), including a quick visit to a massive department store with a mega-kitchen department that was bigger than anything we’ve seen in the UK (seems they love their kitchens gadgets out here!) 

About 2.15, after a pretty thorough visit, we said our goodbyes to Bremen and took the short walk back to the Station.

Back to reality as we queued for the train at Bremen Station only to find that it was running late - not ideal with the temperature starting to plummet as we slowly froze on the platform. Still, at least, when it did arrive, the carriage was warm, there was plenty of room, and the seats were comfy (I’m sure we heard the sound of a single gunshot as a train-driver somewhere was punished for his tardiness!). In contrast, our final leg just caught the beginning of the rush-hour commuters and were were sandwiched into place for the final few stops. The weather was warmer back in Hamburg, and it didn’t take us long to walk back from the Underground, stopping off at the Supermarket opposite the hotel for a few evening-meal essentials.

Bremen was great and we loved it! Even the average weather and the lack of performing animals didn’t take away its magic, and I’m sure we’ll find a way of coming back for another look sometime in the future.

Tomorrow we’re travelling to Stade.