Hamburg rarity: Off to go skating on the Alster

This morning I’m as excited as the little kids I saw yesterday afternoon jumping up and down before they opened up the ice at Planten und Blomen, Hamburg’s huge outdoor skating rink.

That’s where I finally picked up a new pair of skates to replace the ones that broke before Christmas.

Today, I’m going to give them a good breaking in.

I’ve been living here nearly 13 years and never once set foot on the Alster, the huge lake in the centre of Hamburg.  Sitting like a fat, crooked thumb sectioned at the nail by the Kennedy Bridge, the Alster is a focal point for Hamburg life winter and summer.  Been sailing and canoeing on it, rowed in an 8-man racing shell, rollerbladed around it and had a few picnics on its grassy banks, but not once in all the time I’ve lived here has it been cold enough to get out there and scrape a few turns.

Today’s the day!

Out yesterday on the bike  – first to take a ferry ride through the ice pans clogging the Elbe – I swung by the Alster and was astounded to see two skaters in the foreground, a few others in the distance.

Can’t wait can’t wait can’t wait!

It’s minus 15, the day is breaking clear and blue and I’ve got the whole day off.🙂

6 Responses to “Hamburg rarity: Off to go skating on the Alster”

  1. 1 John W
    January 26, 2010 at 1:49 pm

    A lovely photo and my thoughts exactly on skating. I love being on an outdoor rink and as you have so aptly described, I thought my skills were better, but what fun. Thanks for sharing this with all of us. It is like finding a kindred spirit! All the best!!

  2. January 26, 2010 at 1:58 pm

    Oh that is really cool! Enjoy🙂

  3. January 26, 2010 at 2:46 pm

    Sounds like fun – glad you’ve got your new skates!

    • January 26, 2010 at 4:37 pm

      When I got there about 9:30 there were about a dozen others spread out over what I could see of the lake. By the time I left about 5 hours later, there might have been 2,000!

      I’d like to show you the photos, but right now: way too pooped to post.🙂

  4. January 27, 2010 at 3:12 am

    New skates, hurray! Have fun!

  5. January 27, 2010 at 12:26 pm

    Sounds perfect. My skating is atrocious but I still enjoy it. Look forward to seeing more pics.

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