Sunday, August 18, 2013

Our day in Dresden

Slept well last night and didn’t hear the trains or the kids as they came in late.  The breakfast was great and we also had the hard boiled eggs that were missing in Berlin’s buffet. 
By 8:30 am we were on the tram headed for the city center; arrived right at 9 am and entered the Katholische Hofkirche just as the priest walked out.  Beautiful Mass in a fully restored church.   

During the firestorm rains in February of 1945; this building along with most of the others were burned out shells.   Untouched during the war; the Allied Countries were punishing Germany by destroying one of their most beautiful cities just before the end of the war. 
Photos on the walls showed us the condition before and after that event.  The old stones and statues were salvaged and used for the reconstruction.  You can easily distinguish the old as they have left them blacken by the fires that terrible day.  The new stones are light sand colors interspaced between the old blacken ones.  It was rebuilt during the 1990’s.  The kneelers are very hard wood…no padding, and the seats are narrow with a lip protruding from the book rail on the row behind.  It’s not possible to slouch, one sits very straight in these benches.
After Mass we walked across the plaza past the Opera House to the Gemaldegalerie Alte Meister; the museum of the Old Masters.  Snapped a photo of another bride and groom.  We’ve seen so many of them; August must be a popular month to get married in Europe!
I elected to find a comfortable spot and came prepared with my digital book on my cell phone and my Sudoku Book.  Jim took two hours with an audio guide investigating all the corners of the Museum.  He loved every minute of it and like always raved that this one was the best ever!
About 12:30 pm we headed out across the plaza to the Palace; it was so crowded and the wait for tours so long that we elected to bypass this one.  On we went in the hot and humid weather to the Frauenkirche: The Church of Our Lady.  This church was not repaired and was kept as a war memorial prior to the Reunification of    Once repairs were started it took eleven years to restore this originally Roman Catholic Church that became a Lutheran Church during the Reformation; it was completed in 2005 and today serves as a symbol of reconciliation between former warring enemies.  Extremely baroque in style; the interior of the church was beautiful.
 Back outside we found bratwurst sandwiches at one of the stand that were everywhere.  The weekend fair is still going strong over the entire old area of the city.  Then shared an ice cream cone as we walked down towards the Elbe River to walk the Baroque Promenade between the two bridges.  Finally arrived at the Tram Station that took us home for a well-earned rest.  Still hasn’t rained but it sure feels and looks like it will pour at any time. 
Tomorrow we will be traveling by train to Prague.   Below is the link to the slideshow:

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