Friday, October 7, 2016

An early wake up call, familiar city, pages, and Berndt

Did you ever wonder what Augsburg looked like at 6:00 am? Me either. But I've seen it. (See picture below) Apparently they pack full schedules and get you up at the crack of dawn here on Concordia alumni tours. In fact, they were even so kind as to call everyone to make sure we were all up. What?!

I am also understanding why the price was on the higher side. I don't think I've ever stayed at such a nice hotel in all my life. Also when we are done touring and check in, our luggage is magically in our rooms. While we are at breakfast it magically gets on the bus. How crazy is that? This is like a grown up trip or something. 

We were on the bus by 8 and on our way for a quick stop in Bamberg where we strolled around this very old historic town. Beautiful really, and so old. I continue to think I was born in the wrong country. I am so comfortable here it's crazy. Anyway we toured the town and stopped for lunch where I had more apfelshorle and spätzle. Yum!!!!

We hopped back on the bus and went to Erfurt, which will serve as home base for the next several days. I've been to Erfurt many times and while I didn't like it the first time I was here, it has grown to be one of my favorite cities and one I am extremely comfortable in. Once here we had only a bit of free time before rushing off to a mini-recital by Dr. Wente. While the organ was not the type I'm used to playing here, I was so glad to be there and honored that he asked me to turn pages. It reminded me of my college days where I frequently turned pages for chapel and recitals. This was his first recital in Germany which was special. One of my reasons for going on this trip was that I wanted to be in Germany with him since as an undergrad I always wondered about Germany and German organs and what it might be like to go there like Kapelle did trips. I am so glad I came on this trip for so many reasons and even though it's a large group, it has thus far been a much, much more positive experience than the last trip. 

On the way to dinner, I ran into Berndt, a dear old friend from former times. My friends will understand the significance of this. :)

The hotel we are staying at is not my favorite and has odd bathrooms, but it's just a few days. I had given Mark W an earful about how I hoped this trip would have normal bathrooms. He assured me it would and he's done many of ties trips. I have him a bit of a hard time (joking, of course!!) about this and he commented that he thought of me as soon as he saw them. Ha!

We had a large buffet dinner together where I sat with one of my former CUC classmates, his sister, and her husband, which was nice, then back to the hotel. Mrs. Gard and I sat in the lobby and then Dr. Wente and Dr. Gard came too. Once the Gards went upstairs Dr. Wente and I visited a bit and again I just remembered the many conversations during my college days and am so thankful and blessed to have had him as my college organ teacher. I owe him so much! What an influence and blessing he has been in my life, both in college and in the years after. 

Tomorrow we don't leave the hotel until 10:00, which means I can sleep in a little. 

Germany, it is so good to be back. 

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