Saturday, March 20, 2010

Wednesday, March 17, 2010: A Day in Dresden

Sandra. The learning that has taken place during this day cannot be contained within one blog entry. The history of Dresden, the gems of Dresden, and the interaction with Heinz and Crystal were rich experiences of the day. Let me explain. (I am re-writing this blog after losing the entire entry☹). I saw the largest green diamond in the New Green Vault as well as very ‘interesting’ clothing worn by male royalty from hundreds of years ago. August the Strong’s Treasury Collection revealed his insatiable longing for ‘show and tell’ items, majority of which were never used (dust collectors). Some highlights: an emperor’s birthday celebration with hundreds of porcelain parts, a coffee/tea server with a mirror positioned at the bottom displaying a small coffee party of porcelain people, and a ‘wunderwork’ (German word for fine handwork) of a cherry pit with over one hundred faces carved onto its surface. The Turkish Ottoman display was new to me: decorative, practical horse gear which would gleam and glitter in the sunshine, knives, swords and sabers, and an amazing Turkish tent completely appliqu├ęd with beautiful patterns. Since one of my hobbies is quilting, this tent truly amazed me. The historic Green Vault contained numerous rooms: amber, ivory, gilt silver, silver gilt, bronze and a hall of precious gems, rocks and crystals. After having our fill of ‘show and tell’ items, we wandered outside and saw a lengthy mural, displaying the royalty from the past hundreds of years. We also had an opportunity to attend a service in the Frauenkirche and learned about its history. The rebuilding of the church is symbolic of the people as well. We learned about the horrific history of Dresden since WWII. The end of the day revealed another highlight. We were again privileged to be hosted by Heinz and Crystal. But the pinnacle of the evening came when they answered my question of what were some good things about being with the communists. We were privileged to hear a perspective that was not represented by any of the museums we saw in Berlin. An amazing day! (Hey, is that our car that they are towing?)

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