Saturday, 17 August 2013

mainhattan

I took a train to spend the day in the city of Frankfurt am Main and though I had been through there numerous times, I had not taken the chance to scout of the metropolis without a specific agenda and destination—usually a transportation hub. That day, however, I got to wonder at the skyline and linger over the contrasts of a work-in-progress, becoming and the historic fait accompli—much of which had been lovingly restored with care and true to the original, and some of the grittiness, and I  had the chance to see quite a few sights. I saw the big euro sign, which the € always made me think of Uncle Scrooge's (Onkel Dagoberts) Money Bin, before the European Central Bank (EZB) building.
Later walking towards the East Harbour (Osthafen) learned that that towering spire—in every German community one sees scaffolding and construction cranes busy with something—visible behind the beautiful and hallowed Cathedral of Frankfurt (Dom Sankt Bartholomäus), which is also under construction, and the Eiserner Steg, the footbridge across the Main River, is to be the future home of the European Union's financial institution, built on the grounds of the Wholesale Market Halls (Großmarkthalle) of docklands.
Further, as home to Germany's stock market, the DAX, the city has attracted an ensemble of banks and other business headquarters, hence the modern skyscrapers. I thought it good luck to rub the bear's nose and hang on the bull's horns but I don't know if that's really the customary thing to do.
I'll have to ask one of those stock-brokers next time. In back of the timbered houses and medieval edifices that comprise the city's core, the old Rathaus and its extensions known as the Römer—where emperors, newly crowned in the nearby cathedral had their celebratory banquets and is now a happy venue for civil marriages, lies the Pauluskirche (the Lutheran Church of St. Paul), which is an important political monument.
It was really only used as a consecrated place of worship sporadically.  The site is more renowned as the venue for Germany's first democratic national assembly, a convention that led to the creation of the Weimar Republic and, after WWII and the reunification.

I never had the chance before to visit the impressive upper, plenary chamber, the assembly hall, and learn about its history, as it was occupied on a previous visit with some awards ceremony. Surely, there is a lot more to discover and to learn about the city, and I am looking forward to my (and our) next chance to visit.