Remember the old saying that you have to kiss a lot of frogs to find a Prince?
The same is true of churches, synagogues, mosques and temples of all sorts. Some you walk in, walk around, leave. Some you linger. Some you embrace.
Koln's Dom is a famous World Heritage Site. You can tell by the throngs of tourists clogging its interior. It is huge. It is splendid. The stained glass is excellent. The relics of the Magi lend it a particular aura. I am impressed.
It is still a frog.
Aachen's Dom, however, is one of a select few It may not be at the top of my list but it easily makes the top ten, maybe top five. Enjoyed sitting there so much that they locked me in. Finally found someone who could release me.
Aachen was Charlemagne's capital and the cathedral where he is interred. The central octagon (c 800) is the first post - classical cupola to be constructed North of the Alps. There is a certain barbaric, orientalist presence gathered here.
And here's to Koln and Aachen's bakeries. Amazingly crusty and tender brown bread.
I suppose you know that Germany launched their invasion of Belgium from Aachen in 1914? Or that Charlemagne was a strong proponent of conversion by the sword?
If only one of you reads Remarque's All Quiet on the Western Front I swear I'll quit harping on the horrors of war.
ps: Heavy police presence at the Hbf this afternoon and evening. I ask my friends at the kebab Haus what's up and they shrug their shoulders. Best frites in town.