Thursday, May 28, 2009

Conquering the Baroque: Karlskirche

Rob and Maddie had just had their own adventure going to the Karlskirche (click the collage to enlarge). Each afternoon, Monday through Thursday, Rob takes the students for two hours and they see part of Vienna's architecture. He is working his way through the historical periods, so he started with the Roman ruins, then Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance, and now they're in the Baroque (which is huge in Vienna -- they'll be Baroque for a week or more).
The Karlskirche is a huge baroque confection with minarets which was built in gratitude after the plague had left Vienna. It's a wonderful place to see the Baroque because they're refurbishing it, and you can ride an elevator up into the scaffolding in the dome -- "close enough to touch the angels" as Rob advertised it. You can see in the bottom of the collage, the students are standing on the platform in the dome. Even at that height, they're all clustered in the middle, and there is a "camera net" around it so you don't drop your Canon on somebody's head. Above that scaffolding, you can walk up several flights of stairs and peek out the windows in that little top hat that Maddie's pointing to in the center of the picture.
There is a sign at the bottom of the stairs, which warns you that no more than ten people should be on the stairs/at the tippy top at any one time, but there is no one monitoring it. So you are pretty much terrified enough that you wait until someone comes down before you go up. Since it's all temporary scaffolding, it wiggles a bit and gives you vertigo. Even Rob's knees were shaking, and he was the only one left at the top of the Funkturm in Berlin when we went there on a windy day. After declaring herself too old and too cool for Papa in the cathedral crypt last week, Maddie recanted here and asked for some handholding up the stairs. But she made it to the very top!
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2 comments:

klooslip said...

Mary Ann,

We're loving reading your Vienna posts. Our visit to Karlskirche this winter was the first time I've seen M.J. wobbly on a cathedral dome climb. Terrifying but glorious at the same time.

Can't wait to keep following the McFarlane adventures abroad.

Kathryn

mary ann said...

Did not!!!!!
-maddie