Friday, November 10, 2006

Thirteen Days Of Sightseeing

My father's business meetings in Hamburg will last only three days, so he will be joining the rest of us for ten of our thirteen days of sightseeing.

On the three days we will be without my father, Josh and my brother and my mother and I will visit attractions in Hamburg that my Dad has already seen or does not necessarily wish to see. We determined--just this evening, after a series of telephone calls and email messages and instant messages--how the four of us will spend our time while my father is working. My mother will be perfectly content spending three days without my father, as she will be escorted around the city by Josh and my brother and me. We will take very good care of her and she will be in bliss, in the full-time company of three young men she loves and adores. Of course, we will see my father on the evenings of the three days he will be working, and we will all have dinner together on those nights.

On the first of those days, we will visit Hamburg's Rathaus and take the guided tour in English. The tour only lasts an hour or so, as not all 590 rooms are included as part of the tour! Then we will proceed to the Bucerius Kunst Forum and view the "Cleopatra" exhibition, which my father does not want to see. The exhibition opened a few days ago, and my father has already talked to colleagues in Hamburg who attended the exhibition. They have informed him that the exhibition is not particularly impressive and, consequently, he has decided to skip this particular outing. The rest of us, however, have decided to proceed, as planned, and to visit the "Cleopatra" exhibition. After the exhibition, we will explore the immediate center of Hamburg, examining the architecture of buildings old and new, crossing canals via the many old bridges and taking a boat ride on the two Alster lakes.

On the second of those days, we will visit the Johannes Brahms Museum and examine a few notable buildings in the area surrounding the museum. Then we will proceed to the harbor area on The River Elbe and take a harbor cruise, after which we will go UNDER The River Elbe and cross to the other side via the 1911 tunnel. Any remaining time will be devoted to strolling around the harbor area.

On the final day without my Dad, we will devote the entire day to Hamburg's five main churches, called "central" churches by the Bishopric of Hamburg. All five are fairly close together, in the central part of the city, and my father has visited all of them on previous trips to Hamburg. All of the churches have long histories, going back 600 or 700 or 800 years, except for the "new" church, Saint Michaelis, which merely predates the American Revolution by a few decades.

My Dad will nonetheless see three of the five central churches again on this trip, as we will attend religious services at three of the central churches on weekends.

I believe that everything will work out perfectly for everyone. My father will not miss out on anything, my Mother will be in the best of hands, and Josh and my brother and I will have a wonderful time exploring a city completely new to us.

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