Thursday, May 04, 2006

Auf Weidersehen, Nordfreisland

Yesterday proved to be lovely. After a needed rest the evening before, my interpreter, the Pope and me were out and about in the little city of Husum. We bought more goodies despite swearing an oath we were done weighing down our suitcases. I believe there is a hernia in my future.

We visited 3 churches, 2 of which were beautiful and full of art from carved wood. One had the apostles in standing relief on its north wall. To my great delight, Mary Magdeline was the first apostle in line. Certainly this artist knew a spiritual secret. Since Mary M. is a new hero of mine, I took a lovely photo of her likeness to live with my Buddha at home.

The next surprise was stumbling upon a modern art gallery, with cafe, disguised as an old German building. It was white-washed with a thatched roof, smack in the middle of a tiny village. We snuck inside and were amazed to find an entire gallery of modern art upstairs above the cafe. The artist is 70 year old Günter Skrodzki. He has just completed a visual illustration of the entire bible, all in individual prints from handcarved wood cuts. 450 total. It took him 5 years. He has yet to contact any galleries in America to exhibit his vast work. I suggested contacting our beloved Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, NY. Günter's website is:

We had tea and torte with Silke in the afternoon and Abend Bröt with Önkel Franz and Tante Dita in the evening. I took the Pope up to the top of the dike (Önkel Franz' house is right next to the dike at the North Sea) to meet the grazing lambs and feel the constant breeze. There is also a bird sanctuary there and we saw a swan on her nest. The Pope asked for divine intervention and I managed to get his picture on the dike with sheep in the background. We said a tearful goodbye to Ö. Franz and T. Dita and headed back home for our final nightcap with our host and cousin, Johannes.

Today we say goodbye to our car and navigational assistant, Helga. We will take the train to Hamburg to stay with Tante Inge and Önkel Jörn. Tomorrow we will tour the vast Hamburg harbor as it celebrates it's 817th anniversary. The Queen Mary is expected to appear. Then Saturday morning we will say farewell to Germany.

I can't wait to come back.

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