Explore #1 of ‘The Smell of Cheap Cologne Tour’
It had been a very quiet start to 2016 on the exploring front, so I was itching to get away for a long weekend of euro exploring japery. My usual exploring buddy James and I managed to grab some super cheap Ryanair flights to Cologne (hence the naff tour name), and after a middle-of-the-night start by about 11am on a sunny Saturday morning we were in Germany and making our way into our first target: the above-ground section of an abandoned coal mine…
The buildings have definitely seen better days, with a lot of vandalism including extensive fire damage and graffiti. But we both fancied a nice relaxed start to our trip given our tiredness from the early flight over that morning, and this certainly fitted the bill and helped ease us into the weekend nicely.
As always, click on a photo to VIEW LARGE
An old computer and desk, surrounding by some of that fire damage…
The main reason for exploring Zeche P was to see the hundreds of ‘kaue’ (cages/baskets) which are still suspended in the workers’ communal washrooms.
Each cage was suspended on a chain and assigned a specific number and worker, who would store their clothes in the basket before hoisting it up to the ceiling and securing the chain with a padlock.
The standard ‘waschkaue’ (washrooms) for such mines were divided into three sections: the ‘Weißkaue’ (white room) used for workers in their street/non-work clothes, a shower area, and then the ‘Schwarzkaue’ (black room) for changing into and from the filthy work clothes used in the mine. It was an ingenious system, and quite a sight to still see the hundreds of baskets left behind.
We didn’t hang around for too long, as we had another mine with far grander waschkaue planned for later on in the trip – my report from there is coming up soon…
Thanks for swinging by.
Love those baskets. Bit of a long drive north from Cologne though. Try Dusseldorf airport next time.
Cheers mate. I think we actually flew into Dusseldorf and back from Cologne 😉
Really cool, is it possible to check out the mines themselves?
Thanks, no they’ve long since been sealed off – although I’d way rather stick above ground anyway! 🙂
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