Let loose in Leipzig (Part two)

Next on the list was the St. Thomas Church – place of “faith, spirit and music”. I hid my horns under my hood and walked in.

Thomaskirche
Thomaskirche

While the church itself, built in 1212, is very impressive, there’s more than a little history behind this building. Martin Luther preached here in 1539, bringing the Reformation to Leipzig…

Not to be confused with Martin Luther King
Not to be confused with Martin Luther King

Bach was Cantor here from 1723 to 1750, Mozart played the organ here in 1789, Mendelssohn conducted the first performance of Bach’s “St Matthew Passion” after the latter’s death, and Richard Wagner was baptised here in 1813. Not bad, eh? It’s also the final resting place of Bach, whose grave was moved here in 1950.

In addition, there’s a prayer cross which I thought was a really nice idea. It started out as a prayer board in 1989, when unrest in the GDR was at its peak, and reflected people’s thoughts, hopes and fears, and was replaced by this prayer cross in 2001.

20150125_140739[1]I didn’t leave a prayer as I’m a heathen now, but I did drop a few euro in the donation box on the way out. Money is money, after all. I then spent another €0.70 on visiting the ladies’ toilet. I used a lot of soap afterwards to feel like I was getting my money’s worth.

After walking around a little more, I decided that it was time for more refreshments, and found a cosy little place that fit the bill.

20150125_154923[1]

I had planned on getting a nice cup of tea, but when I saw that they had Glühwein, that plan went out the window. I flicked to the cakes section. While the first item on the menu caught my eye, it didn’t sound terribly appealing, so instead I opted for the Apfelstrudel.

Shame they didn't call me before this went to print
Shame they didn’t call me before this went to print

It turned out that they didn’t actually have Glühwein either so the menu lied to me. Instead I chose an alcoholic hot chocolate with Jaegermeister in it. While I’m not normally a fan of Jaeger, this was really quite delicious – and very warming.

The couple in front of me looked a little startled when my flash went off. I think maybe they thought I was trying to take a photo of their baby. Seriously. Why would anyone want to take a photo of a baby when they have lovely, photogenic cake on their table?

Feeling ready to face the world, and the rapidly dropping temperatures again, I continued walking around for another while, snapping a few pictures of eye-catching buildings as I went – not babies – until my face started to feel numb and I made my way back to the history museum (or “Das Stadtgeschichtliche Museum”, as it’s known in German).

This was really the highlight of the day. I hadn’t known that much about Leipzig before visiting, but after spending some time in this museum, you get a fantastic picture of the city, from its origins in the middle ages right up to the present day. The only downside was a “phantom farter”, who seemed to be one room ahead of me all the time, dropping little bombs for my olfactory pleasure.

Little Leipzig
Little Leipzig

When you see what the city looked like after the war, it really is remarkable to see it now.

Fotothek_df_roe-neg_0002629_002_Trümmerbeseitigung

You can also sit and listen to Bach’s music, while looking at the only known original portrait of him. Previously, whenever I thought of J.S. Bach, images of Sister Roisin banging away on the school piano invaded my brain. Now I feel that I will have much more positive associations .

The man himself
The man himself

With the museum closing soon and my bus due in around an hour and a half, it was time to get a drink for the road. Having tried and failed to find a proper German Kneipe (bar), I came across an Irish pub, hidden away down a side street close to where the bus stop was. Disappointingly, there were only around four other people in the bar but I still managed to while away an hour or so, reading my book and mixing grape and grain.

A few days later, I met Dietmar for a few drinks.

Me: I was in Leipzig on Sunday. 

Dietmar: Did you see the Monument to Freedom and Unity?

Me: Um, no…

Dietmar: Then you have not been in Leipzig.

Me: Sigh. 

Next time, before I go anywhere, I’ll ask a German what to see and do instead of asking the internet. Stupid internet.

 

Useful links: 

http://meinfernbus.de/ – bus tickets from Berlin to Leipzig from €8

http://www.stadtgeschichtliches-museum-leipzig.de/index_en.php

http://www.cafewaldi.de/

https://www.thomaskirche.org/

 

Advertisements

87 thoughts on “Let loose in Leipzig (Part two)”

  1. I love churches – altars, especially.

    But Jager scares me…and to think it was good! I wonder if I can make it – usually my alcoholic hot chocolate has either Bailey’s, Frangelico, or amaretto.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. okay linda if you wanna come to leipzig again to see it all come in summer, preferably in june there are a lot of lakes to swim in and if you have a ferienpass you can attend a lot of places witha discount. also defenetely come during the goth festival, its alot of fun to take pictures of weirdly dressed people on the streets)

        Liked by 1 person

  2. You have to go back Linda.and as Dietmar said, you haven’t seen enough stuff!
    The last time I went there was during my “let’s-date-someone-totally-inappropriate-and-different. He was a Goth and I went to a weekend Gothic festival and camped out. Apparantly, it’s a big deal in Leipzig. I thought the Gothic thing might be interesting as they had Japanese Manga and people in Medieval costumes wandering about, but nobody told me about the camping. In the rain. Horrifying!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. It wasn’t mine either. Quite a miserable weekend come to think of it. It was noisy too. And dirty. And muddy. And wet. It rained all weekend. And really, really noisy. If I had known, I would have been better prepared. I’ve been to Glastonbury (only once mind. It was raining there too…), I know the score.
        And everyone was starring. I wasn’t wearing black….!

        Liked by 1 person

        1. The horror 🙂 I’ve heard Burghain is like that here – don’t wear black and you don’t stand a chance. Not that most people stand a chance anyway 😉 Remind me not to try!
          I’ll also be giving goth-camping a miss by the sounds of it 😉

          Like

  3. The church made you pay to use the restroom? Is that normal in Germany? It doesn’t sound very loving and charitable, but then again we must keep in mind what we have learned about German toilet culture. They probably have to pay someone to clean the toilets hourly. I like the prayer cross, though.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Jägermesiter in hot chocolate? Sounds revolting! I’m not surprised they didn’t really have Glühwein – they probably hadn’t updated their menus from December yet (I find most places do Glühwein from around November until the first week of January, then it’s off til November rolls around again).

    I love Apfelstrudel 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Me too 🙂 Hopefully when they update the menu, they’ll have sweet dreams, instead of sweat ones 🙂 I think Jaeger is pretty revolting at the best of times, but for some reason, this worked! 🙂

      Like

  5. I’m still wrapping my head and taste buds around the concept of hot chocolate and Jaegermeister – was it really truly honestly yummy?? You sure you aren’t joking and lost your sense of taste along with all the sightseeing in Leipzig?

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I also seem to miss the most important sight at any town I visit; I get distracted by more interesting things like food, drink and people watching. Having children who are allergic to museums, art galleries, historic houses and anywhere that doesn’t sell cheap tat or sweets doesn’t help 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha ha, yeah, that must be tough! But at least you’ve got a valid excuse 😉 And generally, food, drink and people-watching are far more interesting to me than dusty old museums though – but this one, I can really recommend. I was surprised to see that almost two hours had gone by!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Are you still trying to keep up the charade of “I was going to get tea but then was positively SHOCKED to find that the place sold alcoholic beverages so I reluctantly succumbed to temptation”? Because no 🙂 We know you 🙂 (and we are jealous)
    One of the things I miss/love about Europe is how easy it is to go on a cute, fun day-trip from practically any location. Everything is just a couple of hours away. Double that – and it’s a different country. I was supposed to go on a day trip to Suzdal this weekend (instead I got the plague for the 3rd or 4th time this winter; it has been THE WORST year in terms of being sick), and it’s still within Moscow’s sightseeing realm. To get there is 3 hrs by train plus a 45 min shuttle bus. If I go anywhere for an hour and a half away from Moscow – which is about how far Berlin and Leipzig are apart, right? – I am still IN Moscow.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s about 150km away but takes over 2 hours on the bus – just over an hour on the train, I think but that was really expensive for a day trip! In an hour, I could be in Potsdam, in four hours, I could be in Prague – it’s nice 🙂 Hope you feel better soon! My friend has been sick 3 out of the last 4 weeks as well – sucks to be him 😉
      And I was SHOCKED to see that they serve alcoholic beverages. In Germany. Yes, that’s my story. 😉

      Like

  8. I’m glad that you didn’t order the sweat dreams. That would be a different kind of blog. Though I’m very curious about what would the waiter would have brought.

    I really enjoyed your posts about Leipzig. It seems like a lovely city with so much to see. Now you have a reason to go back. I bet it’s a terrific place to visit in the summer.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Okay, two things:

    1. Gluhwein always invokes images of a wine made of glue, which is not appealing at all. Can you please fix my mental image by telling me exactly what it is, because you seem to like it.

    2. I noticed Eierkuchen on that menu. I’ve never had it, but heard it’s the bomb (from a German friend). Now I wish you’d had it so you could confirm it’s bomb status.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I probably should try it – egg (eier) cake just doesn’t sound that appealing either though! It’s probably great though – like most things in Germany!
      And haha at the Gluewine! 🙂 It’s basically mulled wine – but the Germans often add more to it than just spices – rum, brandy, amaretto, vodka – it’s seriously good! 🙂

      Like

          1. ok linda eierkuchen is just a pancake. german pancakes are thinner than american ones but similiar. the word pfankuchen however can have two meanings (depending on the region) – either a pancake or a sugar sprinkled donut

            Im not exactly a super big fan but I do recommend eierkuchen with applesauce

            Liked by 1 person

  10. You know you could make an excellent book just from your posts on traveling 🙂 You have a way of making me feel that I’m there with you … I definitely would like to be, especially when you have pictures of food 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha, do you have a craving for Strudel and Jaegermeister now?? 😉 And thank you so much – I struggle to find the balance between informational and weird/funny, but hopefully I’m getting better at it! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Right now I’m having a Kirin Ichiban (beer) so I’m halfway there. There is a German bakery in St. Petersburg, FL, near where my sister lives. My husband and I always stop there when we visit and buy Strudel to share (apple, cherry cheese, raspberry). It is quite good and just writing about it makes me crave it 😉
        And you are doing a fine job with your travel posts. Yes, even your Latvia ones were very informative, at least as far as places to avoid 😉

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Ha ha! I really didn’t go out of my way looking for horrible places – these were some of the biggest towns and “cities”! It was just hard to find the fun, or anything remotely pretty a lot of the time. I did my best though 😉
          Yummy Strudel – I bet you visit your sister quite often then 😉

          Liked by 1 person

            1. It did 😉 And it’s nice to be writing about places people have heard of for a change! Some people hadn’t even heard of Riga, let alone the other places! Whereas, in Germany, there are so many cool, well-known places to visit 🙂

              Liked by 1 person

              1. yeah but still its not as much fun because there are no shady drunks or two yanises that impregnate all desperate women in one said town or leopard print manequins or other amuzing things I loved reading about. germany is so normal in comparison)

                Like

  11. I’m often complemented by Bavarians, and especially Munich natives, on how much I know about Munich and how well I know the city. It’s only because I’ve gotten lost so often while walking or riding my bike, made wrong turns, and ended up in very local dives off the grid where I was able to procure extremely useful information. In a nutshell, come to Munich. I’ve got you covered!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. One of the biggest surprises for me when I came in 2000 (and it seems as if the rest of the world’s catching on), Germany has a ton of really cool places! Cities, forests, lakes, small town-hell even the food is grossly underrated. I can’t imagine moving back stateside. I’ve never felt as if I were ‘doin’ time’…

        Liked by 2 people

        1. No, me neither! There’s just so much to be discovered here. And it’s so fantastically located for exploring the rest of Europe too – though I’ll be exploring Germany for a while first! Can’t wait for summer 🙂

          Like

Let me know what you think

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s