The second time I went to Germany to visit family, I was with my mother and brother. Back during spring break of 2007, teenage me was just as eager to explore.
My mom’s sister and her cousin decided that we should drive to Maastricht in the southern part of The Netherlands, neighbouring Belgium on the west. Since my aunt and the majority of the rest of my mom’s relatives in the area live in Köln (Cologne) near the west of Germany, Maastricht is just over a mere hour drive.
Our trip to the city only lasted 3 or 4 hours and mostly entailed of some aimless walking around the city with plenty of conversation, as well as enjoying a meal on the patio of a beautiful restaurant in Vrijthof Square. Dutch and German (Deutch) are quite similar, so I was quite lucky to have family to translate for us. These days, I’m learning bits of German to add to what I have learned from my family over the years. While seated at the restaurant, after the sun had gone down, I spotted some gorgeous buildings and had to take a photo. It was later in the evening and back then, I didn’t know much about exposure/shutter speeds to compensate for lack of light. I didn’t even own a tripod! But somehow I seemed to capture the photograph below of two of the most prominent buildings in Maastricht.
The two religious buildings stand side by side. The one on the left is Protestant — the Sint-Janskerk. The other, pictured to the right, is Roman Catholic — the Sint-Servaas Basilica. The Sint-Janskerk has the tallest tower, in Gothic style, where-as the Sint-Servaas Basilica has four towers, two of which are a strikingly Romanesque style. Both churches are ancient, literally! The Sint-Janskerk’s current buildings date from the 14th and 15th centuries, though the original structure was built in the beginning of the 13th century. Sint-Servaas Basilica’s present buildings date from the beginning of the 11th century, making it quite a bit older. However, history tells us that Servaas, bishop of Tongeren (what is modern day Belgium,) died in Maastricht in the year 384, upon whose grave the structure was soon built.
My new format with voting is to stick it on the bottom of posts for the last 7 days of the month. If you haven’t already voted, please do so!
What would you like to see as a theme for the photographs posted in the first week of May? This month’s options are:
– Aboard Transportation
– Bodies of Water
VOTE NOW! Whichever has the most votes by 11:59pm, Monday, April 30th wins and for the first 7 days of May, my photographs will be a photo-essay in that theme. (If there is a tie, whichever had the most votes first will be chosen.)