Skip to main content

Walking, Walking, Walking...

Today I looked at a map and navigated myself to a pet store to look for something special for Cheesey. The largest store with the best reviews on google was 4 miles away from my hotel.  While looking carefully at the streets on the map, I found that there's another photography museum/gallery very close to the pet store. So now I had to go. I decided to give it a try.

I walked further than no tourist dared to go. Slowly, one tourist at a time, they all fell to the wayside as real Germany emerged. Not one street-side restaurant, no signs in english pointing to main attractions, no Starbucks or McDonalds, only worker looking people driving vans, unloading trucks, and carrying briefcases, only german speaking people around me. I eventually asked someone if I was on Shönhauserstraße, of course in minimal words and maximum gestures. He said, "Ja." and indeed I was on the right street and I found the place I was looking for. Even though it was cloudy and drizzling, I was hot and sweaty from the walk. The pet store was basically a smaller version of Petsmart, and didn't have anything special. I was very sad. And even worse was that the Forum für Fotografie was closed! I was so disappointed again! It opened several hours later, and there was nothing to do around that area so I had no choice to go back to the safety of tourist land.

A post shared by Jaime Tamrakar (@anonymous_hermit) on

On my long walk back I stopped at the Lindt Chocolate Museum. It was pretty fun. I learned a lot about chocolate growing and harvesting. How it was considered the food of the gods, and how there were many trade wars and battles over chocolate. Chocolate only grows in very hot tropical areas and they had an actual botanical garden greenhouse room that was extremely hot and humid with many of the real chocolate plants growing in there. It was fun, but too hot to stay for long. They had a room that looked like a vintage shop with all sorts of boxes of chocolate from history. Chocolate box design haha. They had a typical factory room with conveyor belts carrying little balls of chocolate and sliding down little ramps getting bagged. It was fun. They had a great gift store with, of course, a million kinds of chocolate, in a million shapes. I enjoyed it all.

Then I went to the Ludwig Museum of Modern Art which is right in front of the Dom cathedral. I think this makes museum 15, but I've lost count. It was pretty cool because I actually saw stuff I recognized from books and the internet. I saw Rothko's and Jackson Pollocks and about 30 Picassos. Also, there was a very cool Photography exhibit of Henri Cartier Bresson. Stuff is so much cooler in real life than it is in a book or on a computer. I wonder if digital photography has the same in-person impact. Because when you see a Picasso and you know that his hand actually touched it and worked with the canvas, it gives it some presence. But what did the photographer do with a digital print? The photos made in the dark room still have that presence because you know the photographer held the paper and worked it by hand. I'm not sure if digital has the same impact, but I'm hoping it does. I hope we photographers can come up with something so that it can still have the same impact in person.

A post shared by Jaime Tamrakar (@anonymous_hermit) on
All in all, I bet I walked over 10 miles today. For lunch, I was brave and stopped at street-food stand and had authentic Bratwurst: a giant foot-long hot dog that doesn't fit into a small round french bread dinner roll. But what an amazing sausage/hotdog it was.

Then in the evening Ganesh and I went out to dinner to the famous Früh am Dom, an authentic Cologne Brewery that's over a hundred years old. Ganesh had a beer called Kölsch, but of course, I did not. We both had amazing dinners. He had the pork "medallions" (Schweinefiletmedaillons) with mushrooms in a hollandaise sauce and fried potatoes. I had a turkey "steak" (Putensteak vom Grill) topped with amazing herb butter and also fried potatoes. It was just delicious.


A post shared by Jaime Tamrakar (@anonymous_hermit) on

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Sunset Walk

I had a late start to my morning. I got to sleep in a couple extra hours and have my breakfast at 9, then come back to the room and do....homework?! Yes. I am still in school, believe it or not. So there I, was responding to people on a virtual discussion board. Less than a week of this nonsense before I'm gradumacated. Around lunch time I finally emerged from the hotel room and went down to the Dom again.

I had ordered a decaf americano from Starbucks along with some food and I was waiting at the coffee end of the counter when the lady said, "Decaf americano for Jaime!" and within an instant some dude just grabbed it and ran. I was like, dude, unhand that americano! But it was too late. Then while I was trying to get the attention of the Starbucks employee, the lady announced, "Americano for Dennis!" and it was placed on the counter, lonely, unwanted. I figured that was the dude that took my coffee, so I took his coffee. But I ordered a decaf, dang it, I don&#…

Sprichst du Deutsch? — No Need

The last Museum on my list to see was the Sammlung Boros Collection, which is housed in a former Bomb Shelter built during WWII on Hitler's orders. There were no takers for the project, so forced labor had to build the bunker. After the war, the place changed hands a bunch of times and now is owned by some rich dude whose passion is to buy art for his collection. The bunker is his private residence on the top floor, and the rest of the floors to show off the art which he changes every four years. He only buys from living artists, and refuses to have an agent or a curator. The artists are not necessarily famous but just whose work speaks to him personally. Because his bunker attracts so many visitors per year, he has unintentionally become a driving force in the art market. One review online said that this place was "so hip it hurts." So I really wanted to see it.

I looked it up online to find out where it was since it wasn't on my Berlin map, and I was disheartened t…

Tour de — Düsseldorf?

I don't know why that even a 45 minute flight basically takes the whole day. With the exception of a walk around Berlin in the morning with Ganesh, basically the entirety of yesterday was packing our stuff, going to the airport, going through security, waiting for the check-in to start, finding the gate, sitting there waiting for boarding, sitting inside the plane, taxi-ing around, the actual flight, taxi around again, get our luggage, find a taxi, go to the hotel, the end. I just don't understand how it takes all day.

But that was yesterday. Today I am here in Düsseldorf, Germany, which is much quieter and more remote than Berlin was. It is next to the Old River Rhine. I just found out that the Tour de France is starting here, of all places. In Düsseldorf. Three days after we leave. I know. It's so close that it almost hurts. Not only the first stage of the Tour de France, but the first two stages of the Tour de France are going to be in Düsseldorf. That just isn't fa…