Spandau Citadel Night, Wednesday, 28 April 2004
Berlin has a lot of interesting history and for April, we thought that it would be a good idea to sample that history ourselves for real. So the plan is to wander north and west into Spandau (or "Spandoh" as Homer Simpson would say) and have a knight's dinner at the actual castle/citadel itself.
Following is some history about the place: The district of Spandau was first given city rights, or charter, in 1232. However, the name "Spandoh," as it was then called, appeared in documents dating back to 1197. Its first building complex was the citadel. Spandau citadel, one of Berlin's few fortified castles, stands at the junction of the Havel and Spree rivers in northern Berlin. It is a reminder of the past of the conflicts that have torn Germany for the last thousand years. Today the ruins of this once important link in the defense of early Germany are preserved as a historic monument, open to visitors interested in viewing the way of life of the earliest Berliners. The original building was constructed near trans-European trade routes, which followed old Roman roads laid out when Caesar's Legions subdued the "barbarians of the north." Started in 928 AD, the building was enlarged and repaired after the wars and remodelled right up to the 20th century when the castle, Julius Turm was used to store gold marks. Money stored there was eventually taken as reparation money by the Allies after World War I. At one time during its history, the citadel was the center of Berlin's defense against the Slavs. In those days the rulers always made their headquarters in the citadel. Later, when Berlin became part of the kingdom of Prussia, the King actually made his home in the castle. The town that grew up around the citadel was primarily a fishing village with a few tradesmen to support the people who lived in the castle.
And that's exactly where we will have our dinner on Wednesday, 28th April! We will eat food like the old knights of Germany (which will probably involve a lot of finger licking) and will also have some old German entertainment thrown in (I have no idea what this will be). For your information, I think we have done a deal with the restaurant where we will have a fixed menu for 25 EUR, which includes the dinner and all the red wine you can drink, so hopefully, you are also a fan of German red wine. As usual, if you are interested, drop an email asap to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. It's a big place so maybe up to 20 persons would be OK for this event. I'll reply to every one that makes the list with a confirmation email about where and when we will meet before the dinner. The only problem is that I'm not very familiar with Spandau so it may be that this time, we will meet directly at the restaurant itself.
How it went on the night
Firstly, I like to thank everyone for turning up on time. That was just great, and we had a little time to wander around the place, looking at the great fiery torches outside the restaurant.
Anyway, inside, we started with bottles of pretty decent German red wine (who says the Germans can't do a proper red wine?), and then we had some unusual bread, fresh from the oven, on which we had to spread some lard. That was quite nice actually, better than it sounds anyway. After that, we had soup in some heavy duty ladles, followed by a really nice piece of roast beef. The entertainment was fun, so were the magic tricks and I think everyone had a good time, or at least, I think *I* had a good time anyway, though some bits got a bit blurred afterwards. It's also nice to know that we paid 40% less than everyone else in the restaurant for a great evening!
Settling in Waiting... Ray & Ana Nice bread Lard Tucking in Soup bowl Guitar man Katy & Ray Andreas & Jes Jens Tom & Babs Happy Pati Silly trio Same again Getting drunk Andreas Isabella & Jes Horse Again At night Again