60 Years Ago Today

Tuesday. 19 August 1952:

It was gray and drippy as we left for Belgium the next morning. We traveled through the Holland Tunnel again, along a large dyke, and by a 21 Windmill section. All of us ate Dr. Rogers’ apples as we crossed the Rhine again and the North Sea Dykes.

We reached the Belgium border around 2 p.m. There was a beautiful tree-lined road with big houses and thatched roofs. Later on there were lovely fields of begonias. We drove into a Flemish speaking section of Antwerpen where there were narrow buildings and a big opera house with a Rococo decorated arch. Then we got to see the Royal Palace grounds with guards all around it.

Next we continued driving to Brussels, which was two hours from Antwerp, where we were to present a program for LDS members at 8 p.m. However, I had a sore throat and wasn’t feeling too hot, so I decided to goof off. So instead of doing the program, I enjoyed a nice rest in the hotel room.

60 Years Ago Today

Saturday, 16 August 1952:

I woke to find soot from the ventilator on one of my pillows. Since my bottom sheet didn’t reach all around my straw tick bed, there was straw tick all over and half of Alene’s mattress hanging over my bed. I purchased breakfast for two marks. It consisted of three rolls with meat and watered chocolate. Then we stashed the suitcases in the bus. Whatta chore this baggage was!
On to one of the grandest Gothic cathedrals in the world. Cologne Cathedral which was started in 1248 a.d. Unlike those of Notre Dame the towers were completed. I observed a big hole in one of its walls though. It was damage from World War II.

One of the members showed us around. She was dressed in something like a nurse’s aide costume. She had been coming to this cathedral for 52 years and each time she came she saw new meaning in the surrounding symbols. I noticed the organ was damaged as well. As we were leaving Cologne I noticed block after block of buildings in ruins. Cologne was apparently one of the hardest hit cities in Germany.

Meanwhile, Betty told us about her trip up the Rhine River and meeting Duane and his companion in Dusseldorf. The missionaries go to Berlin for conferences and they told her many stories they had seen there. It was similar to our impressions in Vienna, Austria of empty cities with unfriendly people. About 1000 people came across from East Berlin every week after the war and they had to leave everything. Allies were trying to feed and cloth them even while utilizing Russian flags to make clothes for the children. She confirmed that there was practically no reconstruction in Russia controlled areas to speak of.

During a big youth conference, the people were tightly rationed with food for weeks so they could put on a good show. Scaffolding was put in front of buildings and flags hung all over to prepare for the conferences. Then we drove through an industrial section of Germany with many factories.
As we passed through the Ruhr district of Germany we saw many fields of flowers. I noticed “Rats” written on a building. We sighted our first windmill while we were still in Germany. Here we were racing toward Holland and already I could feel the Dutch influence.

At the border I spent my last pfennigs on two oranges and a roll of candy. Then Dr. Rogers came in and gave me a big scare. My German visa had never been signed by the official who had made it out. After all the times I’ve been in and out of Germany, the Germans caught it on my last time out. Thankfully the situation worked out and I was good to go.

Medieval, Royal Castles Are Big Attraction for Travelers

(Editor’s Note: This is another in a series of articles by Mrs. Afton A. Hansen of Provo on her impressions of a European tour she is making with a group of Utah Students)

Letter to the Editor

Dear Friends,
Castles and palaces in Europe are so numerous that they should come in for their share of mention.

Although the medieval kings and the emperors tried to outdo each other in buildings of splendor, it was Louis XIV of France who was the most imitated. His display of magnificence, splendor, wealth and beauty, at Versailles is oft repeated throughout Europe. Not many of those palaces are now occupied as living quarters, but are museums of treasure and art, owned by the government, and open to the public for a small admission fee.

The Royal Castle of Herrenchiemsee is a gigantic structure created by King Ludwig II of Bavaria. He was called the “mad king.” It was unfinished, but the finished royal splendor surpasses the original at Versailles. Entering the richly decorated, gold and marble staircase, we see hanging from the ceiling a Viennese crystal chandelier with 125 candles, partly burned. On the walk are original masterpieces representing mythical characters — statues of Apollo, god of poetry and song, Flora, goddess of flowers, and Minerva, goddess of wisdom.

Fabled Richness
We proceed through a vast extension of rooms and apartments, gradually increasing in richness and brilliance. There are curtains (drapes) of lilac damask, silk, embroidered with gold thread. One pair of purple velvet drapes weighs 300 pounds. French Gobelin tapestry in exquisite design and color are on walls and bed canopy. Fireplaces are of marble with one of Meissen porcelain, which is unbelievable elaborate and beautiful. Hardwood floors are artistic in design with a variety of woods. The balustrade in the state bedroom is skillfully carved wood and gold leaf. A 300 year old clock within a gold case in the conference room is still keeping good time. Enormous mirrors on the walls in the reception room, 100 feet long, make the room seem infinitely larger as they reflect lights from 33 crystal chandeliers, and 44 candelabrums, hold 2300 candles which are lighted by 60 people every Saturday evening when a public concert is held. I hope that it is almost as breathtaking to read about as it was to see. The short boat ride to and from the castle added to the romance of the day.

Another castle built by Ludwig II is small but none the less a treasure of wealth and artistry. Poor fellow, he only lived here a few days, but it took nearly five years of strenuous work to build it. The formal gardens and terraces might have been more extensive and luxuriant had he lived longer than his 41 years.

History Made
Heidelberg Castle on the banks of the Neckar River in Germany has a somewhat different story—not so elaborate, but where intense history was made. The courtyard here is as highly commercialized as an American carnival, but we were glad for the milk bar and a cold glass of milk.

People of Heidelberg can also boast of their renowned university, as well as the famous representative of the human race—the Heidelberg jaw, a fossilized bone, belonging to the earliest known type of Paleolithic man. Many evidences of prehistoric man, dating back 1000 B.C. have been found in this area.

Castles Numerous
Medieval Fortresses, castles and cathedrals are also numerous on the banks of the Rhine River. A seven hour trip up the Rhine by river steamer from Mainz to Kein revealed a grand panorama of legend and reality, industry and commerce. No wonder the Rhine as well as the rich Ruhr valley is so desirable and strategic.
Though Germany’s wounds are deep, her efforts for the good and noble are persistent, as is shown in the Oberammergau Passion Play, the Wagner Music Festival in Bayreuth, and Kinderzeche in Dinkelsbuhl and the other community activities. This display of talent, with democratic cooperation will go a long way in proving that love and humaneness are superior to brutal force.

Afton A. Hansen

Then we went to exchange our money. It was 3.70 guilder to a dollar. Hofs Dutch Officials came in with our passports after the Germans had gotten through with them. The Dutch looked us over as the passports were passed back.

Now we’re off to see Holland. There was a flood on the road with isolated houses in ruins. We spotted our first big windmill in Holland. Everyone was clamoring for a picture. So, of course, Andre buzzes on. I recognized new kinds of architecture which kind of reminded me of Baltimore. We drove through a town with a cheese mill. Then back to woods, fields, hay in bunches, and our first man wearing wooden shoes! Next we hit a territory that looked just like those around sawmills at home. Darling houses were everywhere. Oh my kingdom for great pictures! Heather was growing in the open places.

A fruit stand stood by the roadside along with beautiful homes and flowers, cows in the meadows, and bridges. Everything was clean and neat. It was raining like it usually did when we entered a new country. We discovered canals, bicycle lanes, power lines, railroad cars and more houses. The autobahn was much smaller here than it was in Germany. LO was having a tizzy about the stunning sights she saw out the bus window.

We drove by a beautiful park with people on the grass and a basket of fruit all wrapped up with ribbons. The quite wide streets were filled with bikes but few autos. I identified a kind of square architecture which was repeated over and over again. As kids were fishing in a canal, I realized I hadn’t seen any ruins from World War II yet.

Dr. Watkins was asking for directions in German I guess. There were canals at every turn and a market place selling all kinds of odds and ends instead of food for a change. A boy on a bike showed us the way to Schiller Hotel which wasn’t bad looking from the outside. It was on a one way street with trees growing out of the sidewalk all along the canals. We had to go around the block to get on the right side of the street.

At the Schiller Hotel cab men were out front watching and smiling. A Rembrandt statue and park were across from the hotel and a sidewalk café was nearby. We checked in and I got room 33 on the 3rd floor. I walked the narrow carpeted stairs that went up half a floor at a time. It was a nice room that overlooked the square.

In the room there were two round basins, hot water, rugs, drapes, satin comforter, two tables, and lounging chairs. It was really cute.

As soon as we were settled we hit the streets. One shopping street was entirely turned over to pedestrians with no cars on the street at all. The shopping area had people walking down on the right side and back on the left side. There were tall people as well as short people, which was kinda nice for a change.

I looked around in a department store for various things to buy and then wandered into a small shop which directed me to an even bigger shop. By this time the gang had become separated. Shopping in groups always seemed to present a challenge.

A store called Gerzon had several shops on the same street. The first shop just had yard goods. Finally, I found the store with some linen and there was Alicia buying hankies. After much debate, I bought a large size pure linen cloth and a couple of hankies. I cashed my two five Swisse franc notes. The poor cashier showed me all the different kinds of money she had changed in one day. I received 4.31 francs for the 5 franc note.

My dinner was especially delicious as I enjoyed it with my two letters which miraculously appeared with the key to my room. I received news from Caroline and my old faithful letter writer, Twila.

Back to eating, I indulged in the most delectable soup since Italy or Swisse. The rest of the meal had peas, carrots, beans, french fries, bread, and roast beef. The bread and roast beef were particularly good. The meal was topped off with dessert and whipped cream. The restaurant gave such wonderful service.

Later I spent a little time after dinner in our darling room looking out at the city lights in Rembrandt Square and writing. At 9:30 p.m. I left for a movie. There were mobs of happy people thronging the streets of all nationalities. Amsterdam at night was really fascinating. It seemed everybody goes to the theater.

I caught sight of clean, delicious looking food in a stand-up café on the corner across from the square. The streets were wide and clean. Once again there were not too many cars, but a big trolley and lots of bikes. We were really excited about seeing I Lost My Heart In Heidelberg. However, we made a new discovery. If you want to see the movie in Amsterdam one must buy tickets in advance. Big sigh! “Geschlossen” on the box office! We coaxed and tried to persuade the doorman to let us stand or sit on the steps but no soap!

The only alternative was window shopping. So we caught the trolley 16 past Kursal where there was a concert that we didn’t go to. With the help of a kind man we got off and transferred to trolley 1 past the Latin Quarter, tenements, and residential area. Then on to the central station. From there we took trolley 5 back to the Rembrandt Plaza. This kind of made a triangle of the west portion of the city. It showed us what at least one section of Amsterdam looked like.
Now at the hotel again, we stopped to talk to LO and two missionaries. Bert and the other missionary told us about the plan to reclaim most of the Zuiderzee Bay from the sea in the next ten years, and also about Avery’s plunge into the canal.

60 Years Ago Today

Friday, 15 August 1952:

I woke to the ringing of the church bells. The day looked dreary, but maybe it was too early to tell. I dressed and hurried downstairs for a breakfast of ham and eggs with Mrs. Hansen. The cheaper rates for breakfast were good till 8:30 a.m.

There had been a big dance last night and Mrs. Hansen had stayed in Weisbaden till midnight. Many LDS servicemen were disappointed cause we couldn’t go. And so were we.

Everyone lugged their bags down at 9:30 a.m. to wait for the river boat down the Rhine. In the still dreary morning I bought a pastry and looked for some fruit. I sat in a street side hotel café writing till boat time. I noticed a bicycle brigade with boys and girls touring by bicycle. I talked to one of them down by the pier, who was from Baltimore. They were from all over the states and most of them were quite young looking. They were traveling with the SITA, a group that arranges international travel experiences for students.

As I got on the big river boat I discovered there were two decks. Lots of people were piling on the boat when we got on and lots more after us. It was smooth sailing with interesting people and sights. There were three languages being spoken at our table: German, English and French.

The waiter brought in delicious looking fruit sundaes. I asked one waiter where we could wash the fruit we had brought with us. He brought us a bowl of water and a napkin. There was a full menu for dinner downstairs. Meanwhile we ate our fruit, pastries, and a candy bar from Mrs. Hansen. I spied a Wiesbaden PX box on the boat.

The boat stopped at little towns along the way to let passengers off and take on more. It seemed there were castles at regular intervals and we heard about the Rhine River legends. We got a souvenir map that showed the details of what we saw.

It was almost 3:30 p.m. and my stomach couldn’t stand it any longer. So some of us went down to the foredeck dining room to eat. Since it was between meals, we were afraid we had lost our chance to eat. However, the waiter, who was friendly and sympathetic, found us some wieners, bread, and potatoes. We also had apple soft which was an alcohol free apple drink. LO and Alice succumbed and bought the tall dishes of fruit sundaes we saw earlier.

After eating I tried again to watch the scenery and write at the same time. The kids on the SITA tour were taking the opportunity to sleep on the deck.

In Cologne, the missionaries, Andre, Helen and Margaret met us. The latter came with Andre so they could visit the P.E. school. We dashed straight to church to give a program. We were changing clothes on the bus and in the church. It was quite an experience with both guys and girls changing at the same time.

Our program was quite similar to the Frankfurt program. Yet we had a smaller and more appreciative crowd. We used their organ but our chorus was rather stale. Poor Bev was still saying “Ick” during the program.

After the meeting, we talked to several of the members. One of the members we talked to was a little blonde girl of 16. She looked much older and gave us her address since she was coming to America in about a year. The branch president told us that they had tried to get a big hall for our program, but no soap. Boxing clubs can rent the hall, but not the Mormons, even after all they have done to help the people after World War II. As usual we had a rough time getting away.

Just like in Nuremberg the first sight of our hotel was quite a shock, but it wasn’t so bad inside. We ate while waiting for the confusion to subside over who went where. Seven of us were in a dormitory upstairs and down the hall. I just took a quick look in the room before I hurried downstairs to write. I ended up talking to the missionaries until 2 a.m. At 2:30 a.m. the manager at Hotel Deutzen Hof sent me off to bed.

Dear Folks,                                                                   15 August 1952:

Today we are sailing down the Rhine. It’s cloudy today, but beautiful nonetheless. This Rhine steamer is crowded with people of all nationalities, a group of American students touring on bicycles, and a group of little boys from England. We saw the room in the Frankfurt mission home where President McKay slept.

We gave a program to a big crowd of missionaries, members and investigators in Frankfurt. It was fun doing it and I hope they enjoyed it. It is pretty hard to prepare programs en route. That one was advertised as a concert, but I’m afraid it couldn’t be classed as such. We gave one the night before in Heidelberg, and then afterwards the missionaries and servicemen took us to the snack bar and treated us to hamburgers and ice cream. I gave my speech again in Nuremberg instead of Vienna and did a better job than the first time.

Most of the cities we have visited in Germany are still very much ruined, although they have been built up a great deal since the war, but when you consider the fact that they were practically leveled, it’s really sad. They have managed to save some of the art treasures by taking them out in the country. The relics from Goethe’s house in Frankfurt were taken to twelve different places and kept till after the war. The house has been restored and the relics brought back to celebrate the 200th anniversary of his birth.

In Bayreuth we were really lucky to see Parsifal. In fact, we were so lucky and it was so wonderful I could hardly believe it. In fact, I’ve been pretty lucky all along. I think I’ve seen more operas and concerts than anyone else. Rigoletto in Paris, La Traviata in Rome, Elektra in Munich, Marriage of Figaro in Salzburg, The Gypsy Baron in Innsbruck, Parsifal in Bayreuth, just to mention the operas.

Vienna was quite an experience. You’ve never seen our bus so quiet as when we entered the Russian zone. We weren’t sure what to expect and we didn’t want anything to happen to keep us from getting in the area. The Russian who checked our passports and cards was very young and kind of a smart aleck. The streets seemed deserted in the little towns we passed through. It may have just been the time of day, but the people we saw seemed very quiet and they didn’t smile or wave.

The American zone of Vienna is built up quite a bit, but practically nothing has been done in the Russian part. They really scared us about taking pictures, but we managed to get a few. There weren’t any operas or anything going on there, but we went to an American movie and had popcorn. Silly thing to do in Europe, but different. We had seen movies in all other languages.

Our meeting with the saints in Vienna was wonderful The people really appreciated having us come, and we really enjoyed meeting them. Many of them are trying to come to America, especially from the Russian part. Some, in fact, may leave all they have just to get out. Our plans are all final for the Scandinavian tour. We are supposed to give a program in Malmo, Sweden, while we are there. We will not get to Stockholm, because we will only have two days actually in Sweden.

60 Years Ago Today

 

Tuesday, 22 July 1952:

Dear diary for some peculiar reason I didn’t sleep as well last night as I was accustomed to. Of course, I was rather uncomfortable with my glasses, earrings, and copper belt on. However, I was thankful for everything else I had had on to keep me warm. I woke at 5 a.m. Usually it is rather hard for me to get up that early. This morning was different, because I woke up raring to go.

As I looked around I found a window open right at the foot of my bed. No wonder it was so cold last night. I cleaned my face and Alicia woke to solve the secret of my disappearing blanket. She had intended to just borrow it until I came to bed but she had fallen asleep. So had the rest of the crew so there was no one to tell me where my blanket was.

I found the washroom with the long trough and brushed my teeth. One of the kids asked for hotel stickers before we started back to the bus. The walk back was quite refreshing as it helped to get the kinks out of my muscles and bones. The forest was misty. It seemed much shorter than the night before.

At the bus we discovered our bags had been taken down and locked inside for the night. We got them out so they were ready to go back on top and then found some oranges at a stand nearby for breakfast. I snapped a picture of hay making on the slopes above the bus.

On the road to Titisee I observed straight pines growing close together with a thick underbrush. No wonder these forests appeared black far away. The road was being repaired. There was Lake Titisee, clear and sparkling below us with a beach and lots of boats. Herr Watkins and Rogers set off to check the temperature of the water. After checking they decided to spend 1½ hours here.
Watkins, Dick, Helen, Margaret, Virginia, Mary and I jumped in to go swimming. Others soon joined us. What a refreshing swim and bath for about ten of us. It was cold at first, but very invigorating. We had a good scrub down with soap and a wash cloth. We took turns scrubbing each other’s backs. We even attracted an audience. Then we dried out in the sun.

Back on the bus we watched the beautiful Black Forest country go by. Andre stopped on a hill above Triberg for a shot of the valley below. It was my last picture so I tried to get a new roll loaded in my camera but the bus was ready to go. In my hurry I accidentally broke the film.

After awhile we stopped in Triberg to shop for cuckoo clocks and eat lunch. We found a nice place to eat at a hotel after wandering in several cafes. I had a delicious meal of soup, roast pork, salad, and potatoes for three marks. I asked for bread and water. It cost extra for bread whereas in Italy it was included in our first and second courses. Watkins read an article in the Hamburg paper to us about friends from Utah while we ate.

We discovered the stores were closed till 2 p.m. and that was the time we had arranged to leave so we decided it would be okay to stay a little longer.

We wandered around the stores for about 15 minutes. As Alicia went back to the bus I told her to honk the horn if the group was ready to go. As I browsed around the book shop there were lots of interesting German books, Reader’s Digest, and children’s books. I thought I heard the horn so I went outside and there was the bus. Some of the kids had been waiting since 2 p.m. and I was really in the dog house. There was a big meeting and the group decided to fine late comers. What a “dealy”!

Next stop was the Rhine Valley where men were putting up hay with ox teams. I glimpsed rows of crucifixes. As we neared Strasbourg, France, I saw typical Strasbourg architecture of medieval structures with black and white timber-framed buildings. Then we reached the border at Kehl, Germany, where there was more red tape. I walked through customs and my passport was stamped twice.

As we crossed the Rhine River, Andre was happy to be back in France. I spotted kids swimming. We crossed the international bridge, and Place des Vosges, the oldest planned city square.
The hotel in Strasbourg was quite different from the rustic hotel the night before. Narrow and tall it sat on a big square near a station with a sidewalk café in front. Our room had two double beds and pink toilet paper. As soon as we were settled I went down to check with the hotel man about Lyon tapestries.

22 July 1952
Hi Folks,
We’re back in France for one night. Last Sunday I gave my German talk twice, once in Zurich in the morning and again in Basel at night. Last night we really roughed it for the first time way up in the middle of the beautiful Black Forest. We slept on beds like we had in the dorm but they weren’t nearly so clean or comfortable.

Then I noticed Bev and the gang. I chased them down to Cook’s to find out about sending money to the missionaries, but they were closed. A fellow came to the door, but he couldn’t give us the information we needed.

Strasbourg was a picturesque city. I went over to the Gothic and Renaissance cathedral to get pictures and I met up with part of the gang there. The cathedral had a beautiful ornate facade facing west. The building was so tall and the surrounding structures were close. Because of this it was hard for me to get pictures of the facade up close. I never finished getting that shot, but I got a picture of one spire.

I met some Egyptian students who were studying medicine at the Strasbourg University. They said the United States was 50 years ahead of Europe in science and invited us to eat with them. I passed on the invitation to dinner and wandered around the older section of the town down by the river. I found more of the typical Strasbourg architecture with sagging buildings, narrow structures, and window flower boxes.

As I continued through Strasbourg, I saw war ruins. Some buildings were gone except for the facade or side walls. Other structures looked like they had been cut in half. Strasbourg was a bilingual city that passed back and forth from France to Germany many times. The older population in the city spoke German whereas the younger population spoke French.

Overall prices were higher here in France compared to Germany. I bought a pastry and ate it along with the lunch that I had purchased in Germany. Then I was off to bed early to make up for the night before.

 

60 Years Ago Today

Monday, 21 July 1952:

We had a continental breakfast at the hotel. I spent the morning trying to find the best deal for my money. I cashed $50 for marks; $10 for French francs; and $30 for Austrian schillings.

When we finally finished our money transactions, Helen and I took off for the famous Basel Zoo. We bought peanuts and saw many European animals that were strange to me. Signs by each one included the name of the animal in three languages plus a picture and explanation. Then a map marked in red showed the animal’s habitat. It was a clean zoo that didn’t smell. Very clever homes were fixed for the zoo animals to simulate natural habitats. I took pictures in front of the giraffes.

At 11:30 we hurried back to the hotel for lunch. I had three servings of Birchermussli as an appetizer. Our waiter, from Rome, brought me a delicious mushroom dish. Then I ended the meal with ice cream.

On our way out of Basel, we visited Dornach and the Goetheanum, the most unusual building in the world because it had no right angles. A school of spiritual science, it was founded by Dr. Rudolph Steiner. I caught sight of houses which had the same architecture. Plays of Goethe were produced here annually in an auditorium that seats 2000. They believed in the philosophy of reincarnation. Beautiful windows of colored glass, green, blue, lavender and gold, showed man’s struggle to reach goals. There were huge wood carvings from the original temple. The boards were placed on top of each other and then carved out to represent the struggle between light and dark.

We traveled over the Rhine River on a bridge that had dynamite holes from World War II. The bridge had been fortified. Street cars could go back and forth between Germany and Switzerland. The French usually traveled over to the German side to eat on Sunday, because it was much cheaper.

Then to Lorrach, a border town, where we crossed back into Germany. We had to declare all of our money and ran into lots of red tape. We spent our last few cents of Swisse change on chocolate. Kids talked about how the Germans hated us. I wondered if this was really true.
Then we proceeded back into French controlled Germany. I sighted the Black Forest in the distance which was black at night anyway. There was a cobblestone road that ran through the town. It was raining as we came into the countryside. I discovered a pretty clean stream of water that wasn’t milky like the water in Swisse streams. There was a man fishing. Another man stood by a watering trough combing his hair as he stared into a looking glass.

Then we passed a tall slender church spire in a little town called Silronaven. There was a sign going into town asking you to be careful, and a sign on the way out saying thank you.

I observed a steep hanging roof as we came into the Black Forest again. The houses and barns were mostly red tiled roofs. There was a crucifix along the road going into Todtnauer. We stopped to look around. In the middle of town there was a great big church with two clock towers on a hill. I saw a different ceiling octagonal shape in decorated wood, huge chandelier, and rounded arches. In front of the church there was a huge elaborate altar with a little fountain and rock garden on the side of the hill. Later, I passed by a bronze plaque with a monument to soldiers.

We were back on the road again. We drove past red hay piles on the hill and a big stack of wood leaning up against a pensione boarding house. I spotted scarecrows in a little field and a bench which sat on a hill by a tree. We traveled up a narrow winding road through the Black Forest to our hotel. And we passed a big ski jump and lift.

The bus stopped at a rest home. It looked like we had to walk from here. First we went into the rest home to find a WC and walked through a game room with table tennis. People of all ages were convalescing here. We found out the walk was 45 minutes to our hotel.

For this reason we traveled light without our baggage. As we started up the trail a man from the hotel was supposed to meet us. We didn’t see anyone so we hiked on. I had a refreshing walk over hill and dale with my trusty sandals. I kept wondering each time we saw a building in the distance if that was our hotel.

Here we were wandering around in the middle of the beautiful Black Forest on our first night in Germany. And there were wild flowers everywhere around us. Who knew what experiences were in store for us in Germany, the country of many of our ancestors?

Perhaps if we had not been so hungry we could have enjoyed our hike even more. When a little truck wagon came along loaded with part of our crew and a few small bags, we were glad to trade places with some of them for the remainder of the journey. We imagined and hoped that we had sighted our abode for the night up ahead.

It was the only building in view and we had already been hiking for some time. Immediately I discovered that the rocks in the road were much rougher riding than walking. Luckily, we were not far from the barn shaped house with the typical low hanging roof. The building we had spotted earlier turned out to be the place. Yea!

As we entered there was a quaint and rustic dining room. We were so hungry we could have eaten most anything at that very moment. But first we went to our rooms or should I say room. Dr. Watkins was a little worried how we were going to like our room. There were 20 of the girls in my room and the balance in another room. And the men stayed in another room up in the attic.

The hotel had rickety stairs and candle light. This was indeed a new experience. I found a dirty unbleached sheet with only one dark horse blanket folded at the end of my bunk bed. There were ten two deck bunk beds lined up in a row in a room barely large enough to hold the beds. I navigated a narrow aisle that ran along the ends of the bed in the center of the room.

I don’t believe anyone particularly relished the prospects of this set up. At the same time we were all getting a big kick out of our experience. We went down to the underground area to find a couple of troughs for our toilet. There was running water no less, but cold running water.

Then we hurried back to the dining room for food. The waning prospects of a wonderful night’s rest had not dimmed our appetites though. I was worried about Irene, because she wasn’t there. Finally, Irene arrived. Virginia played the piano for us while we were waiting for chow. I must say that when the food came there was lots of it, but it wasn’t too well seasoned. But we sure had lots of food—soup, roast veal, potatoes, and salad.

The whole deal of dinner was a little confusing, because they didn’t have enough of one dish to serve all of us. The waitresses were all confused and there were different prices, but we all managed to get sufficient to eat. A soldier and French student were there also.
After dinner the lights kept dimming, but I decided to spend a little time on my diary. So when I could see from the candle light I wrote.

Irene kept rambling up and down and Andre wandered through as well. He had been dancing with the French people. Some of the other kids crashed the party too. There were four or five men at a table that were drinking, laughing, and talking. One man talked especially loud. The men were still going strong when I decided to give up and turn in about 1 a.m. or so.

The dungeon or wash room was so dark I skipped my tooth brushing ritual. I crawled up the stairs to find a candle burning in the corner of the room. Some of the kids were snoring already when I noticed that my blanket was missing from my bunk. I guess somebody figured they needed it worse than me? I reluctantly put my jacket on and my coat over my feet. As I put out the candle and tried to sleep, I was cussing the cuss who took my blanket!

Modern Pioneers:
Utah Group Touring Europe Gets Taste of ‘Roughing It’

Dear Friends;
Waiting at the border to enter Germany, where we filled our forms, counted and reported our money; where someone from around the corner snapped the picture of our bus; where we were hungry, hot and dry,— these were mere trifles to the remaining incidents of this Monday.

Monday, more than once, has been a somewhat grey day for us. Because so many museums are closed on this day we missed seeing the human dolls.
With a sudden clap of thunder and a downpour of rain, we entered Germany and were long in the Black Forest. A black horse standing near the dark, thickly placed pines was vigorously shaking his mane and tail against those black horse flies, which we found later to be so annoying.

Having expected tourist travel to be somewhat crowded in spots we were sharply made aware of it when we learned that our previously booked lodgings at Titisee were unavailable, and we were hoisted none too gently to the mountain. Once again, we took the least amount of baggage for an upward climb.

Said the director, “Some may ride, but some must walk. Take your choice. The hikers will fight horse flies, while the riders will be jostled on the floor (no seats) of a tractor drawn hay cart. Hikers may pick beautiful flowers along the way. Riders must move over to make room for the driver’s big, black, barking dog.” Thinking of our big black dog at home, I chose to ride. Anyway, I was suspicious of those 45 minutes hikes, which usually turn out to be twice as long for us. Luckily, the dog understood English, so “Get out” he did, running and barking through pines, grass, and flowers.

The hikers rationalized as they trudged—”Well, after a hike like this, the American Express Company must be leading us to a lovely spot in the mountains where we will have clean sheets, down pillows and coverlet and running water.”

Said another hiker, “Yes, but maybe the water will be running out of a large china pitcher into a large china bowl, the like of which we have used before.”

As the evening haze crept over the hills, we could see in the short distance, our abode for the night. Todtnauerhutte (Dead Valley Hut) with its steep roof and low overhanging eves, built thus, as a gesture against heavy snows.

Another group of 40 girls, staying for 15 days, had preceded us to the hut thereby, with us, creating an overcrowded condition.

Inside, the dimly lighted dark walled room we seated ourselves at long tables covered with green, brown and white checked table cloths. Served family style, the food was abundant, good and inexpensive. We ate heartily. Never again can we believe that Europeans go hungry.

The carved wooden crucifix hanging in the corner seemed as out of place as we did with the tousled, rugged mountaineers drinking beer at another table.

The sleeping rooms—oh my, oh my. Our small room, Koje IV, was fully packed with three double bunk beds, each having a grass filled mattress, no sheets, no pillow, just one small dark blanket. The comments, giggles and jokes of the girls were enough to keep us warm. We really were close friends that night. Without undressing, we put ourselves on the beds. After a short sleep we were disturbed by a happy chattering group, from a YMCA, preparing to go to Switzerland. About 1:30 a.m. they departed, and we slept again. It seems that many attempt crossing the border at night without passport.

By 6:30 a.m. we were ready to find the bathroom. What, no water? Oh yes, down through a catacomb-like corridor we found it. A long cement trough with three cold water taps. Refreshed with cold water and warm humor, we once again waited to be lifted down the mountain. Hearing a familiar noise back of the house someone said, “This must be it, I recognize the bark.”

Bumping over the hill and vale, rocks and ruts, in the early morning was delightful. We were soon back on the bus, on our way to Strassbourg, happy and none the worse for the Monday Fare.

Afton A. Hansen

60 Years Ago Today

Sunday, 20 July 1952:

Up at 7:15 a.m. all four of us had to bathe in the wash bowl. Alice and Carol had the best turn at the wash basin. Then we ate breakfast at the hotel. Song practice was scheduled at 8 a.m. but the sopranos were late. So I went over to the church with Elders Merrill and Bradshaw.

Chorus practice started at 9 a.m. Then I wandered out into the garden to practice my talk. I was hardly nervous at all. Church began at 10 a.m. with Dr. Rogers first on our program and then the sextet singing group. However, Alice didn’t sing. Virginia talked and then yours truly was next.

I’m sorry to admit that I didn’t know it as well as I could have. Afterwards the chorus sang, You’ll Never Walk Alone and Alene and Betty talked. Both of them did well. Then Florence sang, Herr Watkins talked, chorus sang America and the Branch President talked with Elder Merrill translating. He thanked us for the program, and told us how wonderful it was to have us there and wished us a pleasant trip. The clerk took care of business and the meeting lasted over the allotted time.

We dashed back to the hotel to get our bags down the stairs. Then we went to eat at a cute restaurant down the street. I had my first birchermussli. At the bus members and missionaries were there to see us off. I got a picture of the missionaries and our whole group by the bus.

On our way to Basel, I spied a tank barricade along railroad tracks. In Basel we stayed at another Hotel Victoria. It was as nice as the other Hotel Victorias had been. We cleaned up and left to visit the mission home about 5 or 5:30 p.m. Then we walked down past the Münster Cathedral that had green vines on the front. I spotted the mission home that was a big white house. It was comfortable, modern and clean, just like home.

I met Dr. Kezerean’s brother, Ethelyn Taylor, Nola Allerman, Palowski, and other new missionaries. Brother Meyer and his mother were from South Africa. President and Mrs. Bringhurst found the Deseret News for the last month and we really had a field day with the news from home.

We were off to church with the whole crew strung out over several blocks. Missionaries lined up to greet us. There was an Elder Wendell Stucki from Rexburg. The group did a repeat performance of the morning program. Herr Rogers introduced us all again and we had a great time. I don’t think I did any better on my talk or even as well as I had done in the morning program. However, I did catch a few pronunciation errors which Herr Rogers brought to my attention. President Bringhurst seemed quite thrilled with all our talks.

After church I met one little lady who was related to or knows Jack Sommer in Rexburg and another one who knows someone I didn’t know. I met a little man and his wife who were coming to Ricks College to work in about three months. They wrote their names for me on the back of my talk. As we were leaving I talked to a man whose daughter was in Salt Lake. I had to dash off to get to the hotel for dinner at 9 p.m.

I was almost the last one around so Herr Rogers let me ride in President Bringhurst’s car with them. We drove to the hotel and the chicken was really delicious. Afterwards, I walked over to the station across the street to see about getting my money changed. Unfortunately it had closed five minutes earlier. So I went for a walk down to the Rhine with Elder Telford. We saw the monument to the Swisse by the same sculptor who had made the Statue of Liberty. The Rhine River looked quite beautiful at night. We talked for awhile and then strolled back home past the Migros shopping center.

Traveler Describes Scenic Wonders of Switzerland

Editor’s note: This is another in the series of articles being written by Mrs. Afton A. Hansen of Provo, who is touring Europe with a group of college students.

Dear Friends;
Would you like to hear something about the Jungfrau (mountain) and the Glacier Garden before you leave Switzerland in world travel with us?

From the town of Interlaken, on a clear day, the top of Jungfrau can easily be seen. For us today, it is veiled in cloudy mystery with peaks so high that they seem to belong more to heaven than to earth.

As we wind our way up on the electrically powered cog by cog railway, we catch glimpses through the clouds of the mighty Jungfrau. Three railway systems undertake the ascent. Twice, do we change trains and get a better view of the abundant Alpine flowers and cream colored cows, shaking their tinkling bells, as well as the patted foot path, for those who have the courage to take it on foot. It is all a peaceful combination of heaven and earth.

Safety Devices
Traveling at a speed of about six miles per hour both going up and coming down, we feel the intimacy of the atmosphere around us. Even though we do have faith in the engineers of these mountain-railways, we are happy to learn of the many automatic breaks and safety devices. These Swiss engineers have planned mountain railways through the world. This particular project was ten years in the making.

Several times on the way up we stopped at viewing stations which are masterpieces in the art of chiseling. The last stop opens up into a well-lighted reception room, dining room, bedrooms for guests, lounge, store, rest rooms, and a terrace where our eyes are almost blinded by the white brilliance of the largest glacier in Europe, the great Aletsch, which is 15½ miles long and can be seen in almost its entire length.

A few minutes easy walk in the snow leads to a point overlooking the gruesome depths of another glacier, Guggi, where shining masses of green hued ice open into deep crevasses. A sound as of a booming cannon is heard when enormous blocks of ice break from the masses and dash to a thousand pieces as they roar and tumble down the steep slopes. Twenty glaciers in all nestle around these peaks of dark rock which stand out so vividly against the intense blue of the sky.

Intrepid Climbers
Jungfrau jock (saddle) station is 11,340 feet above sea level, but these intrepid alpine climbers go on for another 24 hours to reach the top.

Skating on the aqua colored crystal floor of the ice palace, felt like skating in a refrigerator. Nature’s refrigerator, however, is most beautiful with lighted rooms and halls, which contain objects carved from ice. There is a car, stove, vase of flowers, Swiss flag and many others.
A sleigh ride, behind Eskimo dogs, over the glacier was also a delight. What a day it was.

Having seen such beautiful tres jolie and sehr schon scenes and objects, we were dubious about any interest a glacial garden could have for us, especially after seeing snow of years packed around the Jungfrau and Matterhorn.

Gingerly we paid our franc to go inside, where at once we realized that this was different. Here was evidence, samples and remains in reality, in relief map, and pictures, dating from the great Ice Age, a period in the history of our globe which takes us far back beyond oldest tradition and historical records; when ice, of about 3000 feet in depth covered the area. In 1842, by mere chance, the first glacier was discovered. It is a caldron shaped cavity, which owes its existence to the friction of a large stone driven round and round by the force of water currents cascading down the icy crevasses and at the same time polishing themselves.

A few feet from the first pit are found other and larger glacier mills, the largest being about 26 feet in diameter and about 52 feet in depth, with the large smooth bolder in the bottom.

Original Finds
In the museum are original finds from a cavern on Rigi Mountain near by which give evidence of the ethical and religious life of man who lived there 520,000 to 20,000 years ago.
Switzerland must be a glorious spot for geologists and archaeologist.

These student and professors of Brigham Young University are really stretching their language wings, giving most excellent programs of music and speech, in Deutsch, to the great delight of local members of the LDS Church.

Sunday evening at Basel, more than 600 people were in attendance in their beautiful chapel. A picnic party hike given for us by Zurich church members offered us a sample of the ease with which Swiss people saunter along the steep mountain trails, for enjoyable pastime. Evening bells from many towers chimed the hour and the rhythm of the hikers.

As a parting glimpse of Switzerland, we visited the Goetheanum, a school for spiritual activity in science and art, at Cornach. This and other buildings are built to emphasize the rhythm and harmony of nature, with no right angles. Their philosophy is based on Goethe’s theory and knowledge, and depicts the struggle between idealism and materialism.

A thought picked up en route is that—one does not become educated by way of institution or formal act of learning alone, but also by self education and that education like virtue is its own reward. Sojourn in Switzerland is an education.