Thursday, January 7, 2010

January 5, 2010: Printing, Pastries, and Presses

January 5, 2010 (Alexander): After a breakfast of Nutela, we caught a Mercedes-Benz bus to the city Maintz. We drove by the US Army Airfield in Wiesbaden and on the bridge over the Rhine River. I counted BMW cars along the way (23 total). In Maintz, we went to the Gutenberg Museum where we saw many different printing tools from small hand press for printing different words, sheet music, and newpapers, stone tablets, including the Rosetta stone (fake). I saw lots of books. Most of them were Bibles. I walked into a high security room with the most precious items of books, Guttenberg's first Bible. We also saw a demonstration of the Guttenberg press. First start out with melting metal and pouring it into a cast to make a peg with a letter at the end which was upsidedown. Organized it into a tray of all different kinds of letters. In order to print a paper, Guttenberg had to put the pegs in backwards and upsidedown order in a tray which was placed onto the bottom of the press. The press was made from a grape mushing machine and used for printing Bibles, books. Guttenberg would put a sheet of paper onto a board which was covered by a wooden frame. The tray of letters needed to be inked. The ink wasn't normal ink. It was made from suit from the glass of lanterns mixed with black paint, so that the paint wouldn't go into the cracks of the letters and make a horrible paper print. Now the frame with the paper would go onto the inked letters and would be pushed underneath the press. Next, Guttenberg pulled on a long lever to put pressure on the paper which would be printed. Then Guttenberg would pull it back out and open up the frame, take out the sheet of paper and there would be the printed piece of paper. Then he would hang the paper on clothes line to dry it out. While walking by a display of things to buy, seeing something small caught my eye. I bought the world's smallest book - a black leather Bible no larger than a penny. Now being very hungry, we went to eat lunch at a pastry shop. We bought sandwhiches and fresh pastries (one being the size of four stomachs). Very yummy! Next we went into a very old and humungous church (the biggest church in Maintz - the Dom). We saw statues, crosses, crypts where many priests where buried. It looked like there were 20 organs in the building. Walking into the oldest part of the city I discovered a Roman wall, made about 200AD. My sister and I tried to hide from the camera. But dad caught us with his G11. Sore legs and cold feet we went home by bus counting again BMWs - I like the symbol. I counted 7000 but I wasn't right, only 34.

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