Monday, February 16, 2009
Strasbourg, France - Valentine's Day 09
This weekend my wife Susan and I celebrated 22 years of marriage. Yes, that is right. I am a helpless romantic. We were married on Valentines Day. Someone told us that roses would be cheaper on that day. They were lying. Smile. We were able to take an overnight trip to a city that we have always wanted to visit; Strasbourg, France. It sits on the border of Germany and France. It is about 1.5 hours from our house.
It is a really cool city. I know I say that about most cities here but I mean it this time. Grin. We like to take urban plunges since we live in a small village now. I found a hotel in the area called Petit France. We ate at an awesome restaurant called Chez Yvonne We were told that many of the French presidents have eaten there. We did not see any but it was a great place to have our Valentines dinner. Probably the best steak that I have had in Europe with the exception of an Argentine Steakhouse in Madrid. It would take a lot to beat that steakhouse but this one was excellent.
I really tried hard to just be a tourist this weekend. I did not twitter, facebook, blog or do email all weekend. Not that I am addicted or anything. But even as a couple on holiday we could not help but to observe some aspects of the city.
As we crossed the Rhine river and entered into the metro area we noticed 100’s of tour buses and a mass of people walking to a park. Traffic was a mess. See Why?
It was a peaceful demonstration from the view of our car but it was a reminder of the magnitude of immigrants who live in Europe.
Some Fast Facts about the city:
• There are about 700,000 people who live in the metro area of Strasbourg.
• Home of the European Parliament (EP)
• The European Court of Human Rights seats there.
• In 1647 the Cathedral became the world’s tallest building for over 200 years.
• The inventor and printer Johannes Gensfleisch zur Laden zum Gutenberg lived there for some time. You may remember his work called the Gutenburg Bible.
But beyond famous people and buildings Strasbourg like all cities in Europe are in desperate need of the Gospel. Interestingly enough a friend of mine sent this to me this past week. Check out this link on Strasbourg for a really cool way to map the city and pray for the people there.