Munich: Rockin' The Glocken'.......Spiel??

Trip Start Jun 16, 2008
Trip End Sep 04, 2008

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Flag of Germany  , Bavaria,
Tuesday, July 8, 2008

What can we say about Munich? It's a city built on automakers, Olympic games and beer, although not in that order. Munich is the home of Bavarian Motorworks, better known as BMW. The museum and BMW Welt present the history of the company from 1917 with the first aircraft engine to today's current production vehicles. Blah, blah, blah.......and they have really cool motorcycles!! If you are more of a Mercedes fan, you would still love the amazing architecture of the BMW Welt! If steam powered vehicles are more your speed, then check out the Deutsches Museum for a look at everything ever invented and how
They have huge jet engines on display that have been cross-sectioned and you can see how all the parts work. Awesome!!
You may be wondering if we have seen Indiana Jones again lately. Well have no fear because we went to a showing of Indiana Jones und das Konigreich des Kristallschadels. The German dubbing was pretty harsh, but the crowd was cracking up at certain parts, which made for a good time.
Watching movies in German made us thirsty, so we headed to the world famous Hoffbrauhaus. Can you say beer? Neither can the Germans. They say bier!!! And why talk about it, when you can drink it?! A liters worth at a time!! We had a really yummy beer called Radler, which is half lemonade!! We dined on bratwurst and sauerkraut, while listening to a brass quartet. You raise your mugs and yell "Prost!!!" or cheers. What a great time it was. Time for a stroll up Neuhauser street and we were headed to the Glockenspiel. Even though the word "glock" means "bell", the Glockenspiel is actually a huge clock which chimes and has moving characters. It rings every hour and presents the crowd with a fifteen minute show. It sounds better than it is. Maybe in the early 1900's people loved it. Its all they had!! No Internet, television or Nintendo Wii. We all stared into the sky with eager anticipation and were once again let down by this famous clock. I will say its vividly painted and one of those things that you just "have" to see before you die. After we were done Rockin' the Glocken', we had a hankering for some Currywurst. Who doesn't love a hot dog cut up with ketchup and curry powder on it?? Maybe the same people who claim the Glockenspiel "isn't worth it". Who are these people?!?! Actually the food is great here and its not scary to try anything.
One day we joined a tour group and took the train to the nearby town of Dachau. This is the site of the first concentration camp of the Third Reich. Dachau was a labor internment camp comprised almost entirely of men. This would be the site that all concentration camps would be modeled after. The first inmates were political prisoners that Hitler and Himmler wanted to isolate as being a threat to their 25 point plan. Eventually, people from all walks of life and every corner of Europe were interned here. The site has been turned into a museum and memorial. Two barracks were recreated to show how the victims lived. At first, they were pretty crammed, with about 212 people to a room, by the end of the war, there were over 1000 men to a room. Dachau was the model for all other camps in Germany, Austria and Poland. This camp was not a liquidation camp until later in the war. The stronger of men and the healthier of victims were working here until they died. The atrocities of what happened at this camp are too numerous to mention. The press would visit Dachau and the place would be cleaned up and spotless. The Nazi's wanted to show the world that they were just running a normal operational prison system. They fooled everyone. No one would know of what truly happened here until they ran out of coal for the crematorium and the war had ended. US troops liberated the camp in 1945, and at that point the victims could tell their stories and the evidence would be shown to the world. This was a very somber experience for us both to visit this horrible place. Its very important to share the knowledge of this camp. Every visitor becomes a witness and has the responsibility to never forget what happened here.
That's it from Munich, a city with boisterous personality and poignant historical significance. Stay tuned for more travel news from Bavaria!!
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