It was drizzling in Koln so because of that and the fact that we are tired and lazy meant that we had a late start to the day. At about 11am we strolled out the door having stuffed ourselves full with the magnificent breakfast that Maike had laid out. It was a German breakfast, lots of different types of bread and meat and cheese and not a cereal box in sight.
We first went to a sports department store called Globetrotter. This was a good fun. This department store has a pool in the middle in which you can test canoes and kayaks. It has raining room for testing wet weather gear (not that it was needed today) and a bouldering room which the kids played in for some time. While the kids were playing in the bouldering room I found a really good book on climbing in the Blue Mountains (yes the ones outside of Sydney.
After the sports department store we headed to the Lego store. The lego store was packed full of kids and parents getting out of the rain. The prices were good and we bought Mathew a Cad Bane (Star Wars) t-shirt. Matthew made and bought three minifigures and also some lucky dip minifigures.
From the lego store we went to the Dom. (Cologne Cathederal). The Dom is easily the most imprssive church I have ever seen. It was finished 632 years after it began with almost 300 years of building included. In this case you can wel believe that the building work took 300 years. Even at the top of the structure where only birds would visit you find statutes of geat size and complexity. I have see a few impresive cathederals in Europe but I will remember the following things about the Dom;
- seeing the overwhelming Dom as soon as we walked out of the main train station
- the scale and intricacy of the structure and its associated statutes,
- a stained galss window that was put in by the window was created by the German artist Gerhard Richter. It is composed of 11,500 identically sized pieces of coloured glass resembling pixels, randomly arranged by computer,
- the climb to the top of the Dom bell tower which provided good views over Koln and the nearby Rhine river.
- the amount of graffitti on the way up to the top to the bell tower
There are 509 steps to the top of the dome and the the kids took it in stride. Matthew charged on ahead and Sophie rode the first 400 steps up on Chris’ back.
After the Dom it was dinner time and we went “Gaffel am Dom” for dinner. This was an authentic german restaurant and pub. Chris had Grillhaxe which was a guranateed 1.2kg of roasted pork on a pork knuckle. It was fabulous but Chris still smells like grilled pork. Di had Bratwurst. The sausage was at least 14 inches long and enough to make a horse jealous. After dinner and tasting the local beer (which tasted like VB) we caught the tube (Koln’s metro) back to Ruolf platz to find some icecream and then walk home. At Maike and Lucas´ place we played cards and went to bed far to late.