Monday, May 10, 2010

Hamburg - on our way to Westerstede - home of my German Heritage

(above: St Michaelis Church, the landmark church of Hamburg)

My parents had been planning to visit us in German since the day we mentioned the possibility of us living in Germany. They have always wanted to visit and we gave them the perfect excuse to finally come. Their trip was put in jeopardy by the eruptions of the Icelandic volcano Eyjafjallajokul and they had to reschedule for a later date after their flight was cancelled. However after a few changes in dates, a lot of uncertainty, and a little luck they were able to make it in and out without incident.

Our plans with them included a visit our distant relatives in Westerstade Germany (a small city near Bremen, near Hamburg). This is the town where my great grandfather, Gerd Jansson grew up and left to come to America, more on this in my next few posts. On the way to Westerstade we stopped in Hamburg where David took his SAT test and the rest of us saw Hamburg for half of the day.

All the changes to my parent’s plans meant that they had to get on our same train, from Dresden, in route to Hamburg, at Berlin. We were optimistically but a bit worried that all would go well for various reasons (the Berlin Hauptbahnhof is a really big and busy train station for one) however all turned out well as they made the connection and we met up with them on our way to Hamburg.

The Rathaus - town hall:

A bier garten on wheels:
A view of the harbor from the top of St Michaelis, the second largest port in Europe (after Rotterdam):

Noah on top of St. Michaelis:
Arial view of the old warehouse district, one of our stops:
My parents, enjoying their visit to Hamburg:
Warehouse district, very much the same as it was in the 1700's:
Warehouse buildings dating back to 1720:
Gothic Church of St. Nicholas, the tallest church in the world from 1874 to 1876:
At the Hamburg Hauptbahnhof on our way to Westerstede:
On the train:

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