10 years ago: Sweden

I cannot believe it is now ten years since I set of to study in Linköping, Sweden for a year. What a character defining time it has been. So many parties, so much laughter, hundreds of people from all over the world, the culture, the landscape… just everything. I love Sweden! I learned a lot about myself up there. So why did I never go there again since then? Frankly speaking, I do not know! I am not the guy for (new years) resolutions but maybe I will find the time to return next year? Who knows!

Actually, I took tons of pictures up there but only a few were worth to be added to my website. I know that they are rather Un-Swedish (i.e. they could have been taken anywhere). For me, they resemble the joy and peace that I experienced up there anyways.

Sweden 3: Heart of moss Sweden 2: Flowers Brimstone Butterfly

Grimmwelt Kassel

Grimmwelt Kassel I visited the new Grimmwelt in Kassel yesterday. It is seated at the Weinberg which is a sort of historic place. It used to be the old garden of the Henschel family who once was famous for the trains and metal parts that they built. There was a long debate as to whether you can build a modern museum up there. I believe that it blends well with the surrounding. It looks a bit like an old Spanish fortress… You can climb on the roof which makes a good spot for small concerts in my opinion.

The exhibition is all about the life of the Brothers Grimm who came from Kassel and spent a good part of their life there. You follow a route of 24 letters which come with a respective dictionary entry each. The letters are not alphabetical which is a bit puzzling in the beginning. I recommend you pick up one of the free maps at the entry. You do actually not follow the letters in an alphabetical order and you start with a letter like Y or Z (I cannot remember exactly). The Grimmwelt contains a mix of old exhibits of the Brothers Grimm and modern interactive content which is aimed at children. Note that the fairy tales are just a small part of the exhibition. The best part focuses on their linguistic achievements as well as their biography. If you really want to understand everything, there is a lot to read – actually too much. The interactive content is fun but the instructions what you have to do are sometimes well hidden. Continue reading →

Play of colours: Edertalsperre @ night

Edertalsperre @ night 10 The Edertalsperre is a dam in Hessen built in 1914. The resulting lake Edersee is the third largest in Germany regarding the volume (199m³) and the second largest regarding the surface (11km²). These figures refer to the full lake of course. When the Edersee empties during dry summers – the water is used to keep the Weser navigable – the old sunken towns and bridges (or rather their remains) become visible again.

Another attraction is the dam itself – especially at night. For its 100th birthday last year, a permanent light installation was added right under the crown of the dam. It illuminates the ports that are used to manage the overflow when the spring melt comes. The LED lights can create many different colours. The light keeps changing though I cannot tell what the exact interval is. Also, the display may be random. After 15-20 minutes, you should have seen everything anyways. It is deffinitely worth a visit, at least when you are around in the area. The images below only capture a fraction of what is shown. For some parts, you would have to shoot a video anyways as the lights are moving around… I still find the “rainbow” most beautiful. What do you think?

Edertalsperre @ night 1 Edertalsperre @ night 2 Edertalsperre @ night 3 Edertalsperre @ night 4 Edertalsperre @ night 5 Edertalsperre @ night 6 Edertalsperre @ night 7 Edertalsperre @ night 8 Edertalsperre @ night 9 Edertalsperre @ night 11

Bern / Thun

Top station of the Gurtenbahn in Bern Yet another European capital to tick off from my list: over the last weekend, I spent four days in Bern. Yep, Bern is the capital of Switzerland, neither Geneve nor Zürich. I always thought it is Geneve… Well, it is similar to the Netherlands where Amsterdam is more famous than The Hague but the latter is the capital.

It takes little less than six hours to get from Göttingen/Kassel to Bern. There is a direct ICE which connects Berlin with Interlaken Ost. I have no idea why the train does not end in Bern because Interlaken is a small town with roughly 6,000 habitants. Maybe it is because Interlaken is close to one of the most famous mountain ranges of the Alps, i.e. Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau? Who knows… I got off the train in Bern anyways.

I stayed in a small private hostel. Actually, it was the house of an artist who rents a couple of her rooms to visitors. Very private… So far, I only slept in normal hotels where you are kind of anonymous. It was totally ok – the room was clean and well equipped, the bathroom was excellent. However, in the future I will rather avoid these kind of accomodations. I prefer to be just a face in the crowd. The good thing in Bern is that you get a free ticket for public transportation with every hotel reservation so I had a four day Bern card that covered the most essential areas.

The weather in Bern was ok. It was not really warm but also not cold. Unfortunately, it was quite cloudy which blocked the view of the Alps for the best part of the four days. That was a bit of a bummer until the last day where I had the opportunity to take some pretty nice pictures of THE panorama. Another disappointment was that the three brown bears which are kept in a large compound downtown were not there because of restoration. :-( Finally, the Tour de Suisse passed the town both Saturday and Sunday. This caused many inconveniences. There were still many lovely things to see. The house where Continue reading →

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