“Ich bin ein Gutenberger!”: The Last Supper at The Twelve Apostles

Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2013
9:30 p.m.

So, we had our farewell dinner tonight at the Twelve Apostles restaurant and bar around the corner from the NH Hotel in Frankfurt. Our wakeup call is 6 a.m., and we board the bus to the airport at 7:30. Our 9-hour flight to Dulles begins at 11:30 a.m. and lands, deceptively in another time zone, at 2:30 p.m. We spread out from there to our respective homes and other destinations, including Dave Stone who will take the train to Paris from here to join up with family.

A few students will wait around the Washington airport with the professors for a flight back to RDU, arriving around 6:30 or so, 12:30 a.m. Friday according to our European body clocks. Eighteen hours of prepping and traveling to get home to our loved ones is a long day, but we’ll arrive home with 21 days of good memories.

As professors, we have been delighted by the fact that all 29 students were ready when we asked them to be ready, and never complained (at least not to us) about walking around cities for hours in snow, sleet, rain, and freezing cold. We have had no sun for three weeks, but their attitudes have been positive, and the depth of their questions and the thoughtfulness of their blogs have let us know they’ve been paying attention, and they have absorbed the history lesson we’ve attempted to relay. We look forward to gathering them together again in the spring semester for 6 hours of debriefs, conversations, and films.

Throughout the course, the professors have selected some of the best blogs by individual students to receive a “Bloggie Award.” These awards have been tins of chocolates in the shape of a London bus, tiny mugs, and other souvenirs. Tonight the students presented their own Bloggies to the professors – shirts from Mainz that read “Ich bin ein Gutenberger!” or, “I am a Gutenberger,” a play on John F. Kennedy’s memorable phrase in Berlin. We will wear them with pride.

Below are some final shots from the course:

We gave the students the opportunity visit one of two museums along Museum Row bordering the Main River in Frankfurt. Here, students look at old dial phones and a switchboard in the Communication Museum.

We gave the students the opportunity visit one of two museums along Museum Row along the Main River in Frankfurt. Here, students look at old dial phones and a switchboard in the Communication Museum.

These sheep were fashioned from telephone cords with phones for heads. Wonder what the artist meant by that?

These sheep were fashioned from telephone cords with phones for heads. Wonder what the artist meant by that?

This Art Deco TV is the coolest piece of furniture ever.

This Art Deco TV is the coolest piece of furniture ever.

Inside the drawers were a reel-to-reel tape recorder, a radio, and a record player.

Inside the drawers were a reel-to-reel tape recorder, a radio, and a record player.

A special exhibition showed actual notes passed in grade school classes over the years. Students could write on a chalkboard in the room, and did.

A special exhibition showed actual notes passed in grade school classes over the years. Students could write on a chalkboard in the room, and did.

We left our mark on the museum.

We left our mark on the museum.

One teacher collected all of the passed notes from students over a period of years. Do you like me? Ja or Nein?

One teacher collected all of the passed notes from students over a period of years. Do you like me? Ja or Nein?

Kids and their handiwork.

Kids and their handiwork.

Speaking of notes, this is a handwritten note by Ludwig Van Beethoven outlining the plan for a coffee machine. Makemson, a major fan of coffee, is now a major fan of Beethoven.

Speaking of notes, this is a handwritten note by Ludwig Van Beethoven outlining the plan for a coffee machine. Makemson, a major fan of coffee, is now a major fan of Beethoven.

SCENES FROM THE LAST SUPPER

We took up four tables in the Twelve Apostles. There was a picture of the Last Supper over the largest table in the rear of the basement.

We took up four tables in the Twelve Apostles. There was a picture of the Last Supper over the largest table in the rear of the basement.

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Rhett, the best German speaker in the group, prepares to dive into his schnitzel topped with a fried egg, bacon, and onions.

Rhett, the best German speaker in the group, prepares to dive into his schnitzel topped with a fried egg, bacon, and onions.

Isolde ordered the same dish, but was more skeptical about eating it.

Isolde ordered the same dish, but was more skeptical about eating it.

This looks like a poker game, but students are actually coming up with their share of the beverage bill. Dinner was on us.

This looks like a poker game, but students are actually coming up with their share of the beverage bill. Dinner was on us.

One of the nicest parts of this journey for the professors was catching up to our friend Marion, who worked at Elon for five years. We had dinner with her, her husband Scott, and their five-year-old daughter Mia at their home in Frankfurt on Tuesday evening.

One of the nicest parts of this journey for the professors was catching up to our friend Marion, who worked at Elon for five years. We had dinner with her, her husband Scott, and their five-year-old daughter Mia at their home in Frankfurt on Tuesday evening.

Harlen and I couldn’t have asked for a better 29 traveling companions over the past three weeks, and we have already made plans for future meals with several of the students who are debating over which restaurant in Burlington, NC has the best Mexican food. From Germany to Mexico, the journey goes on.

Thanks for coming along.

-A. Hatcher

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