hollyhudsonbarley – Our Adventures Around the World – Germany 0

My aunt, brother & I stopped by theAsian flea market just over the Czec border. They have Prada, Louis, Coach, youname it. Some are real (& slightly damaged) but most are knock-offs. Theybeg you to buy stuff & will grab your arm & try to pull you in. Itscrazy. They get mad if you look around & dont buy. We were cussed out moretimes that day… Once was because they didnt have this hoodie in my size. CanI help it I have a big gut” No. Dont make it worst & cuss me out about it.Geez. Kevin wanted to look at this watch & it broke in his hands. It wasfunny because we tried to just stick it back on the stand but the guy noticed& was looking for the piece. Kevin had it in his hand & dropped it onthe ground & said Oh, there it is He tried to play it off but gotcaught. It was funny.   

 We grabbed lunch at a great (and cheap!)restaurant before we left. We ate by the window & were noticing the freshherb garden outside that they used for our food. Then I pointed out a cuteYorkie out there. About that time, the dog peed on the herbs!… not just onelittle batch. He had to make sure he hit them ALL. Yummy

 We also stopped by the Swarvoski &Nachtmans crystal outlets. As Ive said before, its ridiculous the markup theUShas on crystal Leddy was telling me about the Waterford crystal toasting glasses that gofor $180 each or something like that. He found the same ones at the factory for$3 each.

 I took them to Rothenburg, the midevil citywithin walls. (Ive written about it before) They went in the crime &punishment museum & I walked around with Carmen. We went through greatgardens that overlook other cities & the Tauber Valley.

 I was so excited for them to come so that Icould see them experience Germanyfor the first time. But, the most exciting part for me was the roadtrip. Thatis where I got first time experiences with them. We went to places Ive neverbeen before. 

 It began in Dachau,just outside of Munich.Dachau issynonymous with all concentration camps. The word alone struck fear in hearts. Itopened in 1933, was the 1st concentration camp & served as amodel for all other camps.

Over 200,000 prisoners from 30 differentcountries were housed there. When we first arrived at the camp, we took thesame path the new arrivals took. Entering we crossed under the same, notoriousgate with the cruel, mocking message: Arbeit Macht Frei which means Work setsyou free.

 From the inside, we saw rows of barracks& the maintenance house, all containing different exhibits. An electrifiedbarbed-wire fence, a ditch, & a wall with 7 guard towers surround the camp(many would try to escape just so that they would be shot to death & putout of their misery).

 It was surrendered to Allied forces in 1945after they came across the camp, not knowing it existed. It was the 2ndcamp to be liberated which means it was one of the 1st places theWest was exposed to the reality of Nazi brutality. They found 32,000 prisoners.There were 1,600 prisoners to each of 20 barracks which were designed to house250 each. Hundreds were stacked into triple bunks (I have pictures of this). Therewere 39 railroad cars, each filled with 100 or more corpses. They forcedcitizens of the local community to come to the camp & observe theconditions & help clean the facilities. The local residents claimed theyhad no knowledge of the activities of the camp. Yeah, right.

I was forewarned that it is one of the mostdepressing places I could visit. Working for the news for several years, I haveseen a lot. I thought Id be strong enough. Sure itd be depressing but I wouldwalk away thinking how bad it sucked that it had to happen. Well, thats notquite how it was. I couldnt even finish looking at everything. You could feeldeath & suffering all around you. It was so thick in the air. I felt sick,literally sick. I felt like someone knocked the air out of me & I wasnauseous. I am going to forego details on what I did see at Dachau. I cant believe it is tamer than Auschwitz! I think the theme of this camp does well insaying Never Again.

Posted from Germany:
does not exist
posted Sunday October 2007

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