Sunday, August 22, 2010

Gottesdienst und Fischer-Hütte. Germany, Part VII

Whew! I am home now, recovering from jetlag (crashed hard at 9:30pm, woke up wide awake at 5:30am, dozed until 8:30am, got up for a latte and Project Runway) and lovin' Faraday, who missed me. :) The last week was busy and awesome, so I will continue posting about it!

August 15, 2010

Last Sunday, I woke up at 6am and went on a 10-mile run! This was the first "long run" of my marathon training schedule. The weather was perfect, at just under 70 degrees, with clouds and a cool breeze. Now that I don't live there (back Internet Stalkers, back!), I'll post a map for you:

YES. I actually made it to Wieck (the town I missed on my August 11th run)! Wieck is adorable. I returned later that day with a camera, so we'll save my observations for for a bit.

As I was leaving the town, I found the river trail everyone told me about. It connects Weick with Greifswald and hugs the river Ryck (as you can see on the map). Like the towpath, it's a flat, dirt path wide enough for biking and running. I passed several old gentlemen fishing alone in the early morning. We exchanged nods and "Morgen!". The trail spit me out at the Greifswald fishing boat docks, at which point I turned into the town, ran around the Nikolai Dom, exited at Anklamer Staße, and zipped the last couple of miles home. Overall, it was an encouragingly speedy run--with the cobblestoned-towns being speed bumps.

After a quick stretch, shower, and breakfast, I biked back up to Greifswald for the Gottesdienst (church service) at Dom St. Nikolai! It was a Lutheran service, and completely in German, of course. In this big, beautiful cathedral, there were only about 40 people in the congregation, and as soon as the service ended ten of those (including me) whipped out cameras and morphed into tourists. (The cathedral appears to only be open around events and services, hence the church-tourism?)

I really enjoyed the service. We sang hymns from the (German) hymnals (pronunciation practice!), accompanied by the organ.
Light on the organ

They dedicated a cute little baby, and I *think* her grandmother sang a song to her. I stood up when they stood up and sat when they sat, and looked sheepish along with the other tourists during calls-and-repeats (this non-denominational evangelical chick has NEVER understood that, not even in English). During the sermon, the only parts I clearly understood were passages from Matthew (19:14) and Luke (18:9-14). They can be told with simple enough vocabulary and are familiar enough that I recognized them. :) I heard one word repeated a lot, and looked it up later: die Gnade, which means mercy or graciousness. Cool.

Nikolaikirche is beautiful. It was started in 1250 and finished in 1400ish. At some point, the interior was painted white, and the paint is peeling:

I like the imperfections. They are charming.
Die Welt

After that, I walked over to Gabi's apartment just off of the main square. We biked along the river to Wieck for lunch at die Fischer-Hütte (the Fisher Hut)! I had amazing sesame-crusted Zander, which is apparently pike:
AMAZING sesame pike at die Fischer-Hütte

Wieck is where the river Ryck meets the Greifswald Bodden, a bay which connects to the Baltic Sea. It has adorable fishing boats, a pretty bridge, cobblestones...
The Ryck river
Cutest fishing boats
Die Brücke
Wieck's incredibly charming

...a pier with funny faces and a cute cafe with good coffee and terrible service:
The river enters the Greifswald Bodden, which connects to the Baltic
Cute cafe

...and neighborhoods with THATCHED ROOFS (REETDACH) EVERYWHERE.
Mehr Blumen

After coffee and a walk through town, we had Eiskaffees. These are brilliant inventions. They involve ice cream and coffee. Mine involved vanilla ice cream, kaffee, egg liqueur (don't knock it til you've tried it), and the heaviest, fattiest, most delicious-est whipped cream ever. A-maz-ing.

We biked down to Die Klosterruine Eldena--the ruins of the Monastery of Eldena. The abbey was founded in 1199, dissolved in 1535, and mostly destroyed in the Thirty Years' War (1618-1648) (thank you, Wikipedia!). It was made famous throughout Europe by Caspar David Friedrich's paintings in the 1800s. Like this one.
The abbey was dissolved in 1535
They set up chairs here for events
It was severely damaged in the Thirty Years' war

Here is my delightful new friend, Gabi!

And here I am, with medieval ruins, which is actually one of my favorite places to be:
Love it here

After that, we parted ways and biked home!

Distance ran: 9.92 miles.
Distance biked: 7.9 miles.
Distance walked: a lot.
Enjoyment had: indescribable. :)

Lots more pictures here. :)

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