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A Day of Contrasts

sunny 73 °F
View WWII Memorial Tour of Europe on pklein9747's travel map.

This morning we checked out of our hotel in Nuremberg and headed to Dachau Concentration Camp outside of Munich. It was a beautiful sunny morning with a light breeze and the birds were singing which seemed incongruous to our destination.

Dachau was one of the very first concentration camps built. Contrary to what many people believe, Dachau was not an extermination camp but served as a work prison for those interred there. 86628880-9087-4068-9186-672D560A2E0A.jpeg

It included individuals that politically opposed Hitler ie communists, social democrats and other dissidents. In later years, Poles, Romani, Jews and other were held there. That’s not to say that people did not die there; just that mass exterminations were not held there.

From the moment you enter the grounds through the entrance gate, you are reminded that “Work will make you free”. large_10BC16E7-5762-4C3A-A7D7-DAD7C254549C.jpeg
I’m guessing, however, that that did not hold true for many of the prisoners. Life was more than difficult for the detainees. There was little food; terrible living conditions; harsh, inhuman punishments and rampant disease.

Upon entry, the people would be ushered into rooms, relieved of their clothing and other belongings, had their heads shaved and put into decontamination rooms. Then they were issued their striped prisoner uniforms. 72693E4B-B225-4E53-AEE6-A44C00A31E57.jpeg

The crematorium was utilized often to deal with the large numbers of inmates who perished. It did include a gas chamber which was barely very little, mostly for experiments. That was one room that was very difficult to walk into.

It was exceptionally quiet during our whole tour, except for all the birds singing. I found it so in contrast with the terror and hopelessness of those who walked the grounds before us. It is hard to imagine. However, we must never forget what was done to these prisoners….we cannot ever let it happen again.

After Dachau, we were off to Munich. Approximately 30 minutes from Dachau, it is the capital of Bavaria and a very busy city on a Saturday afternoon. We stopped at the meinplatz (city center) to view the old and new town halls.
Ironically, the old town hall looks newer than the new one!

Then, when offered the opportunity to walk to the famous Hofbrauhaus, we couldn’t turn it down.

What a hopping place! It is exactly what you would expect a German beer hall to look like. Beer and pretzels were ordered, the Oompa band played and we had a glorious time..

A study in contrasts from this morning and the reality that life goes on.

Toward the end of the day we headed for our hotel in Austria. The scenery on the ride there was beautiful.
But that was nothing compared to the view from our room…large_00B7588A-06D0-4CB5-8ABB-D525155522B0.jpeg8744B990-B8CE-49C1-9720-94FD9B638138.jpeg


Overall, a long but very good day.

Posted by pklein9747 19:45 Archived in Germany

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Chris started singing sound of music on your room view video! View is stunning! Glad to see Bill smiling!

by Kim Rainville

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