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Published: July 29th 2019
This town is inland from the river's edge so all had to be bused. We were scheduled for the Castle tour but after yesterday it just seemed like over kill. Boyon mentioned last night that this is where you should shop for fun things like German Christmas ornaments and if you didn't take the tour you'd have more shopping time. The six of us jointly decided to skip the castle tour and just take the quick tour around town, enjoy some shopping, have lunch then go back to the boat at two o'clock.
Heidelberg is a University town on the river Nekar. The houses were so colorful and majestic sitting there along the river, so peaceful and serene. We saw the "Old Heidelberg Bridge" with a bronze monkey to mock people as they go by. The current monkey has only been there since 1979 but the original monkey that was holding a mirror in one hand and its butt in the other was put there in the 16th century. (Hey I don't make this stuff up!) It supposedly disappeared somewhere between 1689 and 1693. It is said (and this is possibly
just a legend) the monkey was there to remind anyone who crosses the bridge in either direction to look over their shoulders from where they began to remind them that they are the same person as their respective counterpart coming in the other direction.
We passed another building and the guide told us that it had been a "student prison." for those naughty scholars that may have misbehaved while living in Heidelberg. We were told most students would spend a week or so in the prison and during the first few day only receive bread and water. After that she told us the food was plenty and the stay there was coveted because the students didn't have a lot of money. So sometimes the students would misbehave on purpose just to get in. As you might imagine the prison is now closed.
As we walked past a chocolate shop the guide told us the tale of the Studentenkuss (students kissing candy.) Back in earlier times (not sure of the actual years) it was not proper for a man to even speak to a woman if the families had never met. If a man found
a woman attractive and wanted to let her know how he felt but didn't know the family there was nothing he could do until the Chocolate maker by the name of Knosel came up with the perfect solution. He began making chocolate candies and covering them in a wrapper showing and man and a woman about to kiss. The man could buy his intended a chocolate and give it to her. The meaning of the chocolate gift was obvious. How they proceeded after that is unclear..............
The Christmas store in the University Plaza was everything Boyon said it would be and more. We all had a lovely lunch on a small side street at a restaurant called Vetter. I had schnitzel and it was really yummy.
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