fivemack (fivemack) wrote,

Cologne, Hamburg

I left Brussels on Wednesday morning, and stopped off at Cologne for the afternoon before getting to Hamburg in the evening. Didn't see all that much of Cologne; I think a wiser fivemack might have had something to eat before climbing the 500 steps to the top of the south tower of the cathedral.

The Ludwig museum of post-war and contemporary art has windows with an excellent view over the cathedral, and a cafe with rich potato soup, good apricot tart and free wifi, but that's about the limit of its attractions to me: the most striking piece was a huge canvas over which the artist had spilled four cans of red caviar, waited for them to dry, then carefully numbered the dried bits. Piece number 9999 had been removed by an earlier visitor.

An ice cream and a beer by the river, then onto the slow train to Hamburg, getting in at 10:30, walking over to the hotel, and falling asleep until noon, lost in the wonder of real baths and comfortable mattresses, even if the room is rather expensive, and perhaps the purple leather upholstery might not be universally delightful.

Since then I've been walking around the city. There's an attractive lake in the middle, there's an awful lot of shopping which reminded me a bit of the centre of Birmingham, I haven't got round to any museums yet. The Reeperbahn is tame in comparison to the Khao San road in Bangkok, let alone (I am told; I was too shy to look for myself when I was there) that city's less family-friendly streets: there are places where there is nobody within twelve feet of you on the sidewalk, whilst on Khao San there was no place where you were more than six feet from somebody trying to sell you something. Often fried silkworm larvae. Perhaps it changes its character later in the evening.

Probably I'll be looking round Lübeck tomorrow, then Hamburg harbour, which seems to be where the other half of the attractions are, on Saturday morning before heading to Copenhagen.

I'm running out of books, so slightly tempted to fly back from Stockholm rather than take the 25-hour train trip; is one of the purportedly-Stockholm airports sixty miles outside the city preferable to the other?
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