Sunday, May 14, 2006

Freiburg: Tuesday

Chip, according to my “expert” opinion (how’s the saying go? “It takes a crook…”), is off his rocker. A perfect example of this is the lengths he’ll go to (and drag others with him) to get a picture. Somehow he got the idea into his head that the view of the city from that tower the other group visited on Monday would be really great at sunrise (because I never disputed that idea, the fact that he was right is entirely irrelevant to this discussion). After being connived into joining this little escapade of his, I rolled out of bed at, uh…really early, along with him, Fack, and Travis to make the trek to the tower. So we caught a Strassenbahn into town and hiked up the winding trails of the probably 300ft hill and then another 75ft or so up the tower itself. I don’t really have any way of conveying to you exactly how high this hill was (and thus how tiring), but it might help your imagination to note that we were rushing up it to try to beat the sun (already over the horizon). It was also one of the coldest times of our trip, so we were quite bundled up with several layers of heavy clothing to keep warm. As a side note before we get to the pictures from the top, we discovered a rather fascinating fact (well, it seemed fascinating to our sleep-deprived and Purdue-squirrel-obsessed minds at the time): Black Forest Squirrels are actually darker in color than our own!

You can’t see it very well, but here’s one of them running away from us:

Alas, it’s not going to show up on here very well, but here’s a ~300 degree panorama of Freiburg I took:

Looking down at my compatriots from the upper (much smaller) platform:

Fack joined me on the upper platform to shoot some video and I caught Chip taking a picture of us:

The same scene from Chip’s camera:

And a really awesome shot of just Fack from Chip’s camera:

The large building near the center of the picture is the soccer stadium by the hostel (hidden behind the hill just left of it):

The sun rising over the Münster:

We got attacked by a werewolf on the way up, but Fack was the only one injured before Chuck Norris showed up to save us:

About halfway down the hill there’s a large metal cross facing the Münster that makes for a great photo-op:

After we got back we had our second round of training and then headed to the Mensas for lunch. Shane and I partnered up again and went to the Main Mensa instead of the Science one like the day before. Even though we never got a spiritual conversation going for more than a few seconds at a time, we had some good discussion with the music major we met about his field and some of the philosophy books he was reading (Nietzsche, if memory serves). We were both encouraged by the conversation because he proved to us that what we’d heard about Germans loving to discuss things was true, something we had questioned after the conversation with the grad student on Monday.

Later that afternoon we went to tour the Münster and climb up its bell tower. Most of my pictures from the inside didn’t turn out because of the low light, but here are a few:

Some artwork over the main entrance:

The Allies obliterated Freiburg in WWII, but if you look closely at this 1945 photo, you’ll see something odd. Even though the rest of the city was leveled (including the buildings immediately surrounding the cathedral), the Münster was totally undamaged!

The pipe organ:

The stages of building it showing how the Münster started out as a completely different architectural style and then morphed as the gothic style became popular:

The alter to Mary (totally surrounded by candles):

The front of the sanctuary:

Then we climbed up to the top of the bell tower, where I got this shot of the tower we climbed earlier that morning (a zoomed-in view is inset):

Looking down at the back of the cathedral:

One of the clock towers the Strassenbahn runs under (and a very nice house on the left):

Liz, Pauline, Jessica, and Mindy:

Pauline, Liz, and I:

That night we split for Men’s and Women’s Times. If you haven’t heard of them, they are a traditional Crusade event where the guys and girls split and the topics/discussion/activites/etc are geared toward the specific needs of each group. The guys all went to dinner at Martin’s Brau, a restaurant/microbrewery that fits the American stereotype of German food (bratwurst, pretzels, etc) (I had a dish of three different styles of bratwurst; man that was good):

After dinner we started walking back to the Office for the rest of Men’s Time, but along the way we stopped to watch some teenage street performers break-dance in the lit entrance area of a store along the street. After a few minutes of watching the three of them take turns showing off for the crowd, one of the IU guys challenged II Tim “I’ll give you 2 Euros if you run in there and dance.” II Tim, being, well, II Tim accepted the offer, dashed through to the front of the crowd during a break between the other performers, and immediately started doing one of the most comically bad “robot” dances I’ve ever seen! After dancing for about 10 seconds, he turned around and dashed back out of the center of the crowd. Naturally, the leader of the pack of German teenagers took that as a challenge for a dance-off, started doing a dance to accept the challenge, and tripped! All eyes started watching for II Tim (who now had the upper hand), but he’d disappeared into the night and didn’t even see the guy trip! This blurry picture of him dancing is the only surviving evidence that it actually happened:

Freiburg Table of Contents
Freiburg: Intro and the Team
Freiburg: 1st Friday - 1st Saturday
Freiburg: 1st Sunday - Monday
Freiburg: Tuesday
Freiburg: Wednesday
Freiburg: Thursday
Freiburg: 2nd Friday
Freiburg: 2nd Saturday
Freiburg: 2nd Sunday
Freiburg: The Quote Book


At 2:21 AM, Anonymous Rebecca said...

The reason the squirrels in the Black Forest are different from the squirrels here is that they're a different species. On different continents, who woulda guessed? Purdue squirrels are gray squirrels, while fox squirrels (which are kind of orange in color) can also be found in the nearby area and red squirrels might also be around in larger coniferous woods (don't ask me where those might be). And southern flying squirrels, but they're nocturnal and look a lot different. I don't know what species of squirrels they have in continental Europe (they actually have gray squirrels that have been introduced from North America in England, which are a problem for the natural ecosystems), and don't really feel like looking it up right now, although it does make me a little curious. Oiy. That's what you get for mentioning squirrels.


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