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Augsburg

Location of photos


1. About 40 minutes after departing Ulm, we arrived in Augsburg. The countryside on the way had been beautiful!


2. We arrived fairly early and, once again, began exploring the Medieval heart of the city and ate at a cafe in the central plaza. By this time I had seen so many of them I began having philosophical musings on all this fairytale-ness. There seemed to be almost an unreality about the place.


3. But, perhaps fortunately, not all of the centers of these cities were Medieval fairytale-ness.


4. Augsburg, like many other German cities during WWII, had been heavily bombed. A first, a largely unsuccessful RAF raid in 1942 had targeted an engine factory and caused relatively little damage. But another raid in February 1944 was much larger and caused considerable damage. But walking through the heart of the old town, you would almost never know it!


5. Since we were now in Bavaria I had an annoucement to make to Hans and Franz.
"I simply must buy some lederhosen!" I said.
They laughed, and we found a shop selling traditional Bavarian clothing. Once again we booked a room in a small, quaint downtown hotel. While we dropped our luggage off into our room, I shut myself in the bathroom to change clothes. I emerged fully dressed in my brand-new Bavarian outfit!


This is what my new lederhosen looked like. I decided I would spend the rest of the day wearing them, and I would also wear them on other days, too. I wanted sooo much to look like a real Bavarian!



I also bought one of these hats:



Franz had great misgivings about my new travel clothes. He seemed quite . . . embarassed . . . to have to be seen with me. Too bad!

6. We explored more of the city center. It was fairly extensive.


7. Later in the afternoon, we rented a car and began touring more of the city. We passed some modern areas near a river.


8. Augsburg used to be the center of Germany's textile industry. A few old textile mills had been preserved.


9. We drove east, passing over the river, wondering if we'd see another quaint suburb with orange roofs, as we had in the other cities. This particular one turned out to be nice, but more modern and unremarkable.


10. Same with the area immediately to the south.


11. So, we decided to head back north again, passing through some industrial areas.


12. And some more nice-but-newer residential areas.


13. East of that we passed by a modernistic office/commerce park.


14. And passed through yet another nice-but-newer neighborhood.


15. Finally we reached a point along this side of the river where the built-up area was about to run out. While it was nice here, it was hardly tourist material. So we got on the freeway and went back west, over the river.


16. Once we went over the river, we encountered more of the same.


17. So we stopped here to get gas and grab some sandwiches at the deli in the grocery store. As we walked the aisles, I had a constant smirk on my face at the stares I was getting from my lederhosen. Franz kept a safe distance behind me, not wanting to be associated with me. Hans, for his part, thought it was all rather amusing.


18. After snacking, we proceeded north again to seek out some quaint outlying towns. While these were nice with the usual German touch, once again, they weren't particularly noteworthy.


19. On a whim we decided to head father west along a semi-rural road instead of getting back on the freeway. We encountered this little village at the edge of the countryside. It was just a tad bit quainter than the areas to the east. I began to feel a bit more at ease here, dressed as I was in my Bavarian outfit.
"Wouldn't it be a shame if I bought these Bavarian clothes and all we saw were modern towns?" I said to Han and Franz. They glanced back at me (I was in the back seat), regarding me strangely.
"We'll look for more quaint towns, if it makes you happy," chuckled Hans. Franz shook his head back and forth, in disbelief at the spectacle I was creating.
I also noted several houses and buildings in this little hamlet with solar roofs.


20. We headed south along a country road and encoutered yet another little town. It was fairly modern, but still quaint. It appeared that the west side of town was a bit nicer than the east.


21. But, alas, there were modern and mundane areas here, too. At least this new apartment complex made an effort to be quaint.


22. So we decided to head still farther west and explore some of the urban-rural interface, as we had done in the previous cities. Some areas were reasonably charming.


23. While others weren't.


"Well," I said. "Here I am, dressed in my lederhosen expecting to be overwhelmed with quaintness. But outside of the central city, it's been nice but rather mundane."
"Don't worry," said Hans, "there are plenty more places in Bavaria where you and your lederhosen will fit right in."

24. So we drove back toward the center of the city. We saw a huge water tower.


25. And some more nice-but-unremarkable neighborhoods.


26. Here and there we did encounter some neighborhoods which were semi-quaint.


27. But many that weren't.


28. And some that were a mixture.


29. In the southwest quadrant of the city we encountered a new development which attempted to be fairly quaint. And, I admit, it sort-of seemed to succeed.


30. We drove into it to take a closer look. I was fascinated by the large, steep roofs.


31. It was getting late in the day, but we still searched some more for some quaint, older towns on the outskirts of the city. We did find something I had never seen in the US before - houses built directly underneath major transmission lines.


32. Finally, late in the afternoon we discovered a small town which was reasonably quaint. We parked our car and walked around. At last I felt my lederhosen was being put to good use! While exploring a small gift shop we actually saw another man wearing lederhosen! I was so excited! Hans laughed, but Franz shook his head in disgust once again. We then found a cute little restaurant serving Bavarian specialties and had dinner. I had some Schweine Schnitzel and Kassler Rippchen with a Bratwurst and potato salad on the side. A local German brew (whose name I couldn't begin to remember!) washed it all down.


33. Before heading back to our hotel, we made one last drive through more western neighborhoods and encountered some more nice neighborhoods.


34. And this.


35. And this.


36. And this. But it was almost dark - time to head back to the hotel!


37. The next morning we had breakfast at a cafe in a neighborhood north of downtown. I insisted on wearing my lederhosen again. In fact, I just might buy another pair if we pass another place that sells it, I said!


38. Afterwards, we headed north and passed through some in-city neighborhoods which were a mix of old and new.


39. And immediately west of downtown there were some boring apartment blocks. We looked at our street map and realized there weren't many areas north, west and east of the city we hadn't yet ventured into. So we went south.


40. South of downtown there were some areas which vagely reminded me of some areas of Stuttgart, such as this.


41. And this.


42. But soon we encountered more areas which just looked like the rest of Augsburg.


43. We saw some more industrial areas and garden plots.


44. A university.


45. And a chance to get my industrial architecture fix.


46. We were almost out of areas to explore and decided to call it quits and head for the train station to catch a late-afternoon train. On the way back into town I wanted one last chance to check out some big apartment blocks.


But then we stopped by our hotel to pick up our belongings, surrender our car rental, check out of the hotel and head to the train station. Augsburg had started out with a wonderful city center, but the rest of it had been mostly nice, but fairly mundane. No matter - now it's time to move on to the Big Time - Munich!
 
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