Dec 3, 2007

Back from Nuremberg

I went to Nuremberg not really knowing what to expect as I hadn't had the time to read up on it in Wikipedia. However, upon arrival, I was quickly made aware of how 'advanced' this city was. The airport alone is beautifully designed and I would expect that kind of 'modernization' in a more popular city... such as Munich or Berlin. The taxi we rode in was a Mercedes - of course - and all the taxis over there are painted cream or beige. A great Mercedes feature is built-in booster seats in the back for the kids so that was one less thing to worry about.

Our hotel was about a 10-min ride from the airport and it too was beautifully designed and within walking distance of the 'Christkindlemarkt'. Walking through downtown Nuremberg really did feel like I was in that scene from Shrek with the cobblestone roads and Middle Age buildings. Bratwurst was everywhere so I was in heaven although we ended up eating at Pizza Hut two nights in a row (partly to satisfy the kids and partly for me to reminisce on my days in the US when this kind of food was readily available). Despite its 'Middle Age' feel, Nuremberg is actually a very modern city with the latest designers shops and department stores. This really was feeling like the perfect city. Part old world, part new world. I don't really like giving up the conveniences of home but I also crave the culture that Paris and other European cities offer. I think that's why I liked Florence so much... it also had a nice mix of old and new.
The Christmas market in Nuremberg made me feel like I was walking inside a snow globe. In the center of the city are all these shops selling every possible kind of Xmas decoration you can think of. They also sell handcrafted toys... you know, like the wooden toys you see in those old claymation Xmas movies. We had heard a few stories of how the German people were cold and rude but frankly, I found that to be further from the truth. Most people we encountered spoke English, were friendly and absolutely didn't mind kids at all. Coming from Paris, it was quite refreshing to see folks who smiled a lot and were outwardly friendly.
About the only thing that really bummed me out about Nuremberg is when I returned home and finally did look it up in Wikipedia. Turns out, Nuremberg was pretty much the center of the Nazi propaganda machine with huge rallies and a very prominent anti-semitic mentality. Not good. Not good at all.


Flatwallet said...

As I was reading, I was thinking that is vastly different from the place that the NAZI used to run all their stuff from. Too much history chanel for me. Hey, I though Munchin was like that too and I expected all Germans to be big and racist until I started working in Switzerland and I met many on them. Some really nice and pretty cool people overall. Most of them have worked very hard to shed their history but it will a long long time and a lot of convincing before that happens.

OONR7 said...

yeah... every time I saw an older German person I wanted to sit them down and ask them what it was like back then? Obviously there was major propaganda regarding the war front, but what about the Holocaust? There had to be information about what was going on, especially the scale of it.

Flatwallet said...

Ha did you know the Swiss still have billion of Euros of Jewish money(I mean enough to make Buffet look poor). Money that belong to the people prior to the Holocaust and they did fought tooth an nail not to release it to the rightful owners or their heir.

OONR7 said...

fw: their banking system is probably just one reason why they're not part of the EU.

QQQBall said...

"We had heard a few stories of how the German people were cold and rude"

well, you were coming from Paris, so... i was stationed near Frankfurt in the Army 35 years ago. i went to teh Gran Prix of Europe in Nuremburg - i miss the brats!