Sunday, June 20, 2010

Looking at Fredericia from above

My town is a quite old one. It was founded in 1650 as a fortress, built to protect Denmark from the swedish and german armies. It was difficult, however, to make people move to the brand new city, so to attract citizens, it was made in to a religious free-zone.

Thus, jews and huguenots and other religious minorities came to set their mark on Fredericia. Even today, names like Honoré and Fournais are common here.

Still, it is easy to see that the town was once a military fortress. All around the center of town, the ramparts of Fredericia still lie - nowadays more a town park and recreational area - but probably the best maintained ramparts of any town in Denmark.

Only a little of the ramparts have been erased - that is by the industrial harbour, where the trains come into town. Other than that, you can still walk most of the way around the center of town on paths in the rampart area.

Today I went to town - actually I was going to the vegetable shop to get fruit - and on my way on foot into town, I realized that the water tower on top of the rampart was open for visitors.

With a shameful face I have to admit - I've never been up there. And as the day was sunny (finally - it's been a weird kind of april weather with rain and sun and rain again today), I decided to skim up the side of the rampart and do a little photo expedition.

So here you see the water tower. I don't think it is used as a water tower any more, these days - but it looks nice up there in all the green.

I laid down 10 kr. to get into the tower ... pretty cheap, it is the same as 2 USD. So I shimmied up those stairs, and got myself an eyeful of my town. Actually, Bruno and I gotta go up there some time and bring coffee. They even have chairs and tables so you can do a picnic thing, if you like.....

I just had to check to see if I could see the roof of my own house from there. Because really, it is only a five minute walk from my house to the water tower. I couldn't, though ... but if you look at the cluster of red ceilings over behind the trees, on the left side of the long red building, that is about where I live.

Like I mentioned ... the ramparts are really a lovely kind of park, that cuts through town and stretches most of the way around the center. On one side it goes all the way out and meets the waterfront. I run up here a lot, and it is possible to run 6-7 km without really leaving the ramparts and the beach area.

This picture is from the water tower, taken in the direction of the beach.

The view of the city from here is really nice. You can also see the industrial harbour - and I even managed a fairly good shot of it, even though I didn't bring a proper camera, so I had to do this expedition with my iPhone :D

Here are a couple of other pictures, overlooking the outside of the ramparts, and the centre of town.

When I had my share of pictures and pretty views, I decided to go run my errands, before the shops closed on me. Actually, a lot of stores never open on sundays, but we have this one supermarket and veggie store that is open until 4 in the afternoon on sundays.

Back down on the ground, I went by Riddergade to pop into Midtpunktet, where my shopping was happening. Riddergade - in english Knight Street - is a special place to me, even though it is a rather small and insignificant street.

This little street is where the very first place Bruno and I shared is located... we had a rented flat in there for 6 weeks - a wonderful, scary, confusing and happy time of our life.

A bit further down you find our favourite restaurant in Fredericia - Caffe Katia - where we usually go to celebrate our birthdays, for saturday lunch ... and whenever we long for good food and nice company.

On this picture you see two similar houses. We occupied a tiny apartment at the very top of the one to the left - way up under the ceiling.

I am happy to be back in town, and this time in a real house of our own! I love Fredericia - it is a small town, but with all the accomodations I need, and I really feel at home here in this pretty, charming town.

Going back home I went through what was until about 1925 the main entrance into town. Most traffic went through this tiny gate! When Danmarks Gate was opened close to here, Prinsens Gate was closed for motorized traffic, so now it is only people on foot and on bicycles that go through here.

I read that frequently they had loads of hay and other high loaded wagons that got stuck going through ... I can easily imagine that, as I look through the tunnel going through the ramparts.

It is a lovely walk - and on a day like this, where it rained hard, and the air is fresh - and the sun is out and warming up the moist earth - I just enjoy being able to combine my shopping for groceries with a lovely walk like this...

And even after having passed through Prinsens Gate, the signs of the fortress that was are everywhere. Mostly these canons are used by kids for climbing on, and pretending that they are battling the enemy...

Going back home, I give you a final peak at the moat. Once a scary place where the blood flowed, and now a place for kids to ride rafts and catch fish, and for ducks to float peacefully around ...

Just a few minutes after I took this picture, it started dripping rain. I barely made it home before the sky opened up, and it was pouring like a crazy april day again.


Bobbi Boe said...

Dearest, thank you so much for the lovely tour!

I dream with taking pictures of the town myself. It has been way too long, but alas maybe next year!

Bunched Undies said...

Great pics Lotte...thanks for posting them

Lizelotte said...

Bubbles, I was thinking of you the whole time :) Next year!! I really hope so!

Thanks, David - if you and your wife should ever find yourselves in Europe, you must stop by Fredericia :-)

Bunched Undies said...

Thanks Lotte. We hope to retire in a few years and do some traveling. There is so much of Europe I have not seem.

Bunched Undies said...

or seen. LOL
Your English is better than mine.

Lizelotte said...

Hehe ... naah I just have to think while I write, so I don't make as many typoes :D

Well, if you do travel in Europe, know that you are welcome here :-)