In Saturday’s post I rhymed Mainz with rains which is phonetically incorrect. It’s actually pronounced more like “mines”. Rookie tourist mistake. 🙂 I tried posting this yesterday (Sunday) but lost internet. So I apologize in advance but I’m too lazy to correct all of the tense – I’m posting this a day late.
This morning I tried to be a big girl and find my way to the train station alone to meet up with Lisa, Mike and Lisa’s friend Anke to visit the Domaine du Steinberg or as we have been calling it “Steinberg Winery”. That was a fail. There were a couple of levels of confusion one of which was that I went to the wrong train station and therefore was unable to locate the train they were on. I threw in the towel on making it to the winery and instead explored the more historic parts of Mainz that we didn’t get to yesterday.
I’m a bit challenged blogging on my phone so I’ll try to be as historically accurate here as possible but I may be wrong about some things and am not gonna fact check myself so yeah, grain of salt.
It’s hard to spend time in Germany without facing some of the brutally depressing realities of what happened here before, during and after world war two. Thousands/millions of lives lost and historically significant places obliterated. I spent some time this morning in the ruins of a St. Christopher’s cathedral that has been turned in to a memorial to those who lost their lives here. We had a far less depressing afternoon visiting the Gutenberg Museum and learning about the invention of printing press and history of book binding.
When Hitler came to power, thousands of people took to the streets of Mainz to protest. What had been a strong and growing Jewish population of more than 2000 attending two temples was dwindled down to just 60 survivors when the war was over. The city was bombed by the Royal army and was quite literally left in rubble. Structures cathedrals dating back to Roman times were completely destroyed. At the end of the war, 1.5 million cubic meters of rubble covered the city and everyone aged 14-60 was asked to volunteer in cleaning it up.