Sunday, August 28, 2011

A Gotcha on Gotland

Map picture

OK, I admit it – I goofed yesterday when I sent out my e-mail about Gotland, and its capital city Visby, Sweden. I directed you to enjoy the photographs in order to better understand the medieval city, but there were no photographs posted yet. I had meant to hold that blog until I got the pictures all organized, but in my rush, I went ahead and sent it – so, what can I say- sorry.

So, all the pictures for Visby are now posted, and the blog pages are all up to date at our web page:

This also allows me the opportunity to add something that is quite important about the ancient city of Visby. Unlike Florence, Italy, or just about any other medieval city I can think of, Visby is a lively and vibrant community which is lived in even today. Even one of the smallest old homes there will cost over $1,000,000 to purchase, and the citizens jealously guard the historic treasure that has been handed down to them. On the other hand, medieval cities like Florence are no longer really lived in, but merely exist to serve the tourist. The actual citizens of Florence live in the surrounding modern city and leave the old city to the hoards of tourists to frequent. So, the city of Florence is filled with shops of all types, from ice cream parlors to expensive leather goods. On the second floors of some of the old building college students will rent small apartments, but the city itself is for all practical purposes now a museum. That is what makes Visby so special. It is very much alive and well.

Anyway, enough of my babbling; today we docked in Copenhagen, Denmark. Our arrival was a real caravan since we were following two giant cruise ships into the harbor, and three more were following us. Having spent many days in Copenhagen and the surrounding countryside, we decided to take a day off for ourselves. The day dawned so pretty, that we could not resist at least going into town to visit two famous art museums. So you will see posted a few random pictures of our quick travels.

Copenhagen, DenmarkFirst we got some great photographs of a church and an old fort right next to our ship. Then we went to the two museums, and were back by lunch.

Tomorrow promises to be more exciting. We will dock in Warnemunde, Germany, where we have arranged for a private car and guide to take us to visit the Castle Schwerin in the countryside. We should be gone from the ship for around 5 hours and if time permits we will grab a look at the nearby town of Rostock. The primary reason that the ship docks here is to allow passengers to make a 12 hour day trip into Berlin. Having done that once, we certainly did not need to do that to ourselves a second time.

We hope everyone is doing well, and this time you really can enjoy the photographs at:

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