Hannover and the fog

Ok, so this is the post about Hannover.

Well, I went, stayed for a good 6 hours, came home.

Unimpressed, right?

Sorry, it was the general feeling I got while there. And a sense of frustration too, because I think I might have miss the opportunity to enjoy the trip more, if only… actually, I don’t really know the missing part.

I went once to Hannover, but merely to change train, I even didn’t get out of the station. Last month I went for real, to meet an Italian friend who was there kinda by accident. Since I love the expression “by accident”- it sounds so magical and romantic- I decided to join her. I took benefit by Mitfahrgelegenheit again, and jumped into a car owned by a lovely couple, who drove surprisingly carefully..and slow. I was fine with it, except the fact I was on the back seat with other 2 pop girls, grilling on the window kissed by sun (read sweating) and trying to ignore the swine flu one of the Iphone dependent gal was not-so-gracefully caring (read how come you are still alive with that cough?) in that tiny sealed cubicle.

I wish I didn’t hate the sun, because Hannover was so grey, foggy and dull I genuinely laughed. Mid-May and a poop weather, cheers. It wasn’t the usual reassuring grey I’m used in Berlin but a very wintery, annoyingly humid grey. And cold too.

The city center was basically divided in old town center and shopping area. Very practical, but I didn’t see a smooth integration of the two. I really enjoyed taking pictures around Altes Rathaus but I was reflex-free so my poor mobile wasn’t working great with all that grey and dark going on.

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skull

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Nice is Mashpark, next to the Town Hall, with lake and animals. There I got closed with the inhabitants, and shared a meal with them. We had great conversation about Hannover, the average climate and philosophy.

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IMAG2393We were both anthropologically optimists!

The most enjoyable thing was to meet my friend and have a quality time with her, after months just talking remote (but thank you Skype); I got so many good vibration just by her company and stories, it reminded me of the energy I had and need to polish out again. Another nice thing I really liked of that afternoon was the break from the fog (fizzy hair, argh!) in the nicest Cafe for coffee and cakes..Yum!

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I think I was basically happy to visit the city, but quite unimpressed by it. Maybe the missing part was what’s beyond the fog.. weather, maybe next time better, will you?

March: Leipzig

This I am going to describe is a typology of travel occurring quite often: occasional trips.
Take a boring week at the office, a long and slow flow of the time, a desire of Springtime and a free weekend.
The result for me was Leipzig.

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I’m currently spending this lively existence in Germany, as I might have already said (have I?), and there are two cheap ways when you want to travel across it: one is the Wochenende Karte, a cumulative ticket (up to 5 people) to travel to any destination by regional trains for the price of 40-45 Euro; the other one is the a service called “Mitfahrgelegenheit”, car and train pooling, a super good idea to optimise time and spare money by sharing the mean of transport with strangers. I managed in few hours to find company and rides to visit Leipzig, yeah my March trip could start.

From a city to another one, Germany offers the view of green and yellow fields, rivers and gigantic wind turbines. From time to time small “dorf”s, aka villages.
Leipzig’s main train station,Hauptbahnhof, has a direct and quick access to the city center, I like that.
The first thing I noticed was how streets were empty but clean on Sunday morning, I like that too.
See, a bad aspect about having an occasional trip is that, basically, you don’t organize where to go and see, so you are quite ignorant about what’s in front of you, despite the fact you had a quick read on the internet; looking at the bright side of the road, the good aspect is that you’re open to anything the city lets you discover, and making so, you are easily impressed.
Well, map on a hand I found out that as internet proclaims, Leipzig is a true beauty, so historically rich and compelling, thanks to its value for music and literature. Bach Statue in front of St Thomas’s Church put a huge smile upon my face, I felt so happy to touch him and say a silent thank you. Also Goethe memorial is in an amazing location. To see.

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Guten Tag Herr Goethe.

 Goethe’s Faust stated that Leipzig was “the Paris of the East”: unfortunately I couldn’t see if it’s true in a cold Sunday of March but from what I saw it is a quiet but culturally active German city. A paradigm to state this can be the accuracy gave to music through statues, theaters and the Opera. Beautiful match.

A wonderful building is the Town Hall, a massive colossus of stones, middle ages souvenir of a castle maybe, and speaking of that also stunning it’s the market square, where you can still feel how pulsating must have been back in the good ol’ dark times. One little detail that made me laugh for some minutes (being completely honest w/ you…I dragged the joke the entire day) was the name of the street:

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Ring? King?

 I know, it’s totally normal for Deutschland, but please think of it in English as I did…quite funny indeed. 

Outside the Rathaus there is a beautiful park, Johannapark, I really suggest to visit: it has lakes, sweet low hills and lovely saison fields of flower. at the end of the park you get to the urban river, where it’s really enjoyable to hang out in the afternoon.

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A remarkable place that I suggest is Panorama Tower, at the university: at the top there’s a restaurant where you can have Sunday brunch while enjoying the view outside. What better than having cappuccino and cake “high-flying”?

In the end, despite the fact I visited for just few hours, Leipzig is worthy of a trip, if you want to allow yourself a little nice Sunday.