Friday, November 26, 2010

Wintertime for Harolds in Munich

Philip’s German conversation partner has a friend who is a staffer for Bayern Parliament.  This contact allowed us to participate on a special tour of the Bavarian State Parliament building, known as the Maximilianeum.  So, on a cold Tuesday morning we all took a train to Munich. 
The tour began with an elegant luncheon complete with fancy beverages (mixed juice and soda), cream of broccoli soup, veal cutlets and “kartoffel puree” (mashed potatoes).  The group then climbed a few flights of stairs and sat in a meeting room with long tables (usually used be representatives while deliberating decisions) and viewed a short video about the current parliament. 
After this, we were able to be ushered into the balcony for the public while the members of parliament discussed a couple elements, mainly details of accommodating the upcoming Winter Special Olympics.  The last element of the tour was questions and answers with a current representative. 
The children were good as gold, quiet as mice and cute as buttons as they tolerated hour after hour (four total) of this very unique opportunity!  We are very very grateful to Hannah and her friend for this once in a lifetime privilege.  Who knows, maybe Edy has a future in politics someday? 
The next day we got to see Theatinerkirche near the Maximiliam Josef Platz.  This church is breath-takingly beautiful;  all white ceiling and pillars, carved with entwining garlands and cherubs.  Maximilian Josef himself is entombed in this church, which was constructed at the news of his wife expecting their first heir.
It was in this platz in Munich that we were picked up in a van to chauffeur us to Franciscan University Gaming, Austria campus for Philip to give a guest lecture.  It was a beautiful, mountainous three and a half hour drive.  As we crossed the border into Austria we realized that this blog post was getting too long, besides we were getting car sick.  More later…


Plenary Session of the Bavarian Parliament

Briefing with a Member of the Bavarian Parliament


Maximilian Josef's Tomb

Edy in front of the Munich Opera House

The Alps, on the way to Austria

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