I think, these two days (26 - 27 May) are going to be the only two consecutive days, I will be doing very little business. Meanwhile I found that I can get access to free internet in the hotel where we stay. So, I caught up with most of my mails bending for the last few days. At 10.00 a.m we left for a sight seeing tour of Hamburg. We traveled by several underground trains, by bus on a guided tour, and even we had a very entertaining afternoon on a boat ride guided by the captain himself. Well, if you thought that Venice is the best "Water City", now there is competition! Venice has about 1,000 bridges, but Hamburg has more than 2,200 bridges! You can imagine how much of water flows through this city which is a home to over two million people. It has the touch of modernity with the flavour of ancient cultures (mainly Gothic) spread all over the place. One of the longest iron bridges I have seen is in this city. The city is building a second largest sea port of Europe (next to Amsterdam) covering over 81 sq.kms. With a simple lunch and a grand dinner at an Italian restaurant which gave us splendid recipe to subscribe to our palate, it was a wonderful evening which ended with a long walk. (Surely required for digestion!)
On 27th, Tuesday we traveled to the ancient city of Lubeck, further north on the Baltic Sea coast, covered by rivers Trave and Elbe, is an UNESCOs heritage site. The city claims to have the remains of the ice age! You can still see the immaculate splendour of the middle age sculpture, the Brick-Gothic style which is peculiar to Lubeck, and the mixture of people from many parts of the world. Once we reached Lubeck by car, we walked through the day visiting many monuments and churches of ancient days, and ended up with a grand lunch at Dominsus, a Greek restaurant provide excellent cuisine. We enjoyed a very sumptuous lunch that was provided by the Greeks running the restaurant.
When you walk through the streets you can also find the remains of the Reformation era, every church tells a story of the Catholic-Lutheren and Calvinist developments. Looking into the churches you can see how the structrues and systems have been changed due to the change in faith of the people. I was repeatedly told that these churches have been either taken away by the government as monuments or / and have poor attendance from the church-goers. I believe there is a scarcity of faith that needs to be rejuvenated by a very saintly person. We need some Francis Xavier to come to preach the Word of God to these people once again!
With a visit to a Benedictine Monatery and mass at the monastery in Nutesche we called it a day. We had dinner at the home of Smitkas and we returned at 9.25 and the sun had just set!
I MUST CLOSE THIS WITH A WORD OF THANKS TO THE SMITKAS FOR TAKING SO MUCH TIME OFF FOR US AND FOR HOSTING US IN A VERY GOOD PLACE !