All things considered Frankfurt, Germany wasn’t my first choice of plum destinations to spend a week exploring prior to starting a 6 month contract. In the end it was perfect, I had a ball. In no small part because of my dear UK friend who lives there who put me up, fed me lots of beer and excellent food, and put up with my laissez faire approach to train timetables during our 2 days in the Rhine river region.

Last day in Frankfurt and the sun shone

My friend has taste. He lives in Bornheim, the main street of which is full of excellent cafes, bars, restaurants, pubs and clothes stores. Each morning I breakfasted at Hannibal which I can highly recommend. It’s right next door to a charming coffee house called Cafe Wacker. Seriously! I just translated that with Babel Fish and it says wacker means “more wacker” – what a crack up!
The wackos at Cafe Wacker!

There were a few eye catching business names in Frankfurt…

If only, could do with a back replacement...

If only they did sell new backs… I think it was a bakery.

The hotel where you stay undercover...! ;-)

A hotel? I hope they don’t spy on their guests…

Surely a grown man should know better...

Frankfurt is a reconstructed city, having been bombed to smithereens (I have a postcard, there was practically nothing left). The ‘Old City’ looks fabulously grand but is essentially fake. This man in the main historical square fitted right in though! I never expected to see real lederhosen in real use on a real man!

Frankfurt’s quite like Melbourne – skyscrapers, a river (the Main), bridges, cafe culture. Here’s some pics.

Old CityNew cityOld city detail with cathedral spireOld city roof steeplesLovely church on the south side of the riverFrom the docklands area east of the cityfrankfurtjuxt.jpg

Frankfurt has excellent museums and galleries too. If you’re ever there do not miss the modern art gallery – Museum fur Moderne Kunst. I especially enjoyed Thomas Bayrle’s Mao China inspired ‘machine’ paintings, Serge Spitzers ceiling installation ‘Quiver, Rustle, Tremble, Stir’ which I lay entranced on the floor watching for about 20 minutes, and On Kawara’s impossible work. He’s been doing a painting of the day’s date in the format of the country he happens to be in every day since January 4th 1966. He also keeps separate journals of the people he meets each day, where he went and what he read. He has also typed out all the numbers of a million years from 1969AD to 998031BC and published it in a book. This has also been recorded on 32 CDs. It was playing in a room with glass doors called the Smoking Room. Tell you what I’m glad I wasn’t the voice over artist for that.

The Rhine river flows and flows fast. It’s lined with vinyards and forested hills, and quaint quintessentially German towns filled with Germans eating German food, singing and swaying along to German folk music with gusto. Really. I saw this many more times than once. REALLY!

Chairlifts were the theme of the weekend. I’m so glad too because it meant forests, which I have not been in really since I got to the UK.

Tip for you – stay in Oberwesel. Delightful, small, historical and nowhere near as commercially touristy as some of the other towns.

Don't blame him, those hills were steep!Saw a few of these, v cool.Check out the wine toting character at the right... funny lot these Germans.Forest above Rudesheimtherhine.jpgView from the Rudesheim chairliftGorgeous Oberwesel chapel next to town wall, part of hospital now.Oberwesel churchWhere the Rhine changed its mind.

Oooh, one last thing, if you ever see a dish on a German menu that includes ‘musik’ (that’s music in English! ;-D ), order it at your peril! Actually it wasn’t that bad, the musik part is lots of raw onions which I didn’t eat. It accompanied some sort of meat in a greyish clear set jelly. That was the adventurous part for sure! Tasted quite good though really. Really, it did.


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