German Word of the Day:
(a) v.; to explore, to research, to examine
On Saturday, we train-hopped to Hannover. Hannover is the capital and largest city of Niedersachsen (my state). My group of YFU exchange students got a chance to go sight-see around the city, and then we were let loose to explore and see what we could find among Hannover’s 500,000 inhabitants. Here are some of the things we found:
- A bird’s eye view of the city. You can see here how Hannover is a mix of old and new – look at the contrast of the red bricks and tiles with the modern gray cement buildings.
- There are two Rathäuser, or city halls, in Hannover. The old one was built during the middle ages; the neues Rathaus is more modern and is filled with beautiful pieces of architecture, like this staircase – I think it looks like you could throw a penny in and have your wishes come true, right?
- The city of Hannover has a lot of history connected to World War II. Hannover has a large train station that transported goods and soldiers during the war. This station was also used for transporting groups of Jews and others to concentration camps. Ever since the war ended, the two platforms that were used for this purpose have been empty of trains. It was chilling to stand in the station and think of others who had also stood there, about to get on a train that would take them to a terrifying and unknown future as prisoners. The train station also caused Hannover to be heavily bombed during the war. In the new city hall, there are dioramas of Hannover before, during and after the war. A few ruined buildings still stand in the city today as memorials of the fighting.
- Finally, after all that sight-seeing, we got to one of the more highly anticipated parts of our visit: a place that sold the famous German-Turkish Döner! Traveling tip: if you want to taste the “real thing”, you apparently have to go to Berlin, but our knock-off lunch didn’t seem to bother anyone too much.
So that’s a wrap! One destination crossed off my bucket list. Bis später!