Thursday, September 27, 2007

Düsseldorf II

Longtime readers of this blog (way back from two weeks ago) may notice that there was never an original Düsseldort post. Good Job! However, this trip to Düsseldorf last weekend was our second trip.

What these two trips had in common:
1. Beautiful Weather
Both times we traveled to Düsseldorf we had bright blue sky and it was at least 70° F.
2. Charming Altstadt
Here is a photo of the Rathaus (city hall).
3. Walk Along the Rhein
Many people enjoyed the last hurrah of summer weather.

Here the similarities ended. The last time we went to Düsseldorf we went with a group of at least 50 Goethe Institute participants. The normally excellent German train system was out of whack. There was a problem on the tracks which delayed all trains and made it difficult to get from Köln to Düsseldorf. So we went via the Netherlands (not quite ... but almost). Anyway, it took 4 hours the first time but only an hour this last weekend. With such a long delay the last time, we only had a few hours in Düsseldorf but we did see the Media Harbor, the Altstadt, and Königsallee (Rodeo Drive of Germany).

Königsallee has a canal (part of the Düssel for which Düsseldorf is named) running through the center. There is a street on either side (one direction of traffic each) and then expensive shops. The first time we went was a Saturday ... the street was so crowded you couldn't even look in the windows. The second time was a Sunday so all of the shops were closed. This seems like a great time to window shop ... but I was with two men.

The trip this last weekend was for the purpose of meeting up with our friend Eric. I've known Eric since my first year at CSU Hayward (for my masters degree). While at Hayward, I took some mathematics classes at UC Berkeley where Eric was a graduate student in Mathematics. Eric taught me lots of math. Fortunately for our friendship, Eric and Arlo really like each other and I really like Eric's fiance Mette. Eric and Mette are currently living in Nijmegen in the Netherlands (a common theme when it comes to us and Düsseldorf) where Mette is working at the university (Art History). Unfortunately, Mette was sick and a bit overwhelmed with her course load and so was unable to join us this weekend.

It was Sunday so there were very few places open. However, the main point of the trip was to visit and catch up ... so we walked for a while and then sat for a spell before we repeated. We had a beautiful lunch in the Altstadt (on what I call Restaurant Row).

The mathematicians deep in conversation
Lunch in the Altstadt.
While walking through the Hofgarten we saw this sleeping beauty tree (or the mys-tree as Arlo and Eric wanted to call it). The case appears to be preserving some sort of lichen on the tree ... but I'm not sure.
It seems like the wrong time of year for babies ... but these baby black swans were adorable. I tried out the movie feature on my digital camera. I think it came out pretty well.
Some interesting architecture in Düsseldorf (in the media harbor)

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