|A doorway just down the street|
|A little less inspiring - but still, everywhere!|
|The soldier that got away at the last minute! A prominent image.|
|She says she is afraid of all the colors. That's not going to work.|
"Life is a Cab Away". Ok - I just had to put that in writing because it was stuck in my head - and once a copywriter, always a copywriter. But in fact, we didn't take a cab anywhere other than to and from the airport. Once again, the public transport was excellent and very near where we were staying in the hip Prenhauser district. Options included trams, trains, buses, and the underground. But as usual we walked most everywhere.
This time our flat wasn't as nice as the others. Maybe that's East Berlin, or maybe this owner has an affection for dead plants, dust, totally random cooking equipment and lumpy pillows. And to top (or bottom) it all off there was a Dutch Toilet...I'll let you Google that yourselves.
|Not the kitchen of my dreams|
We followed our usual procedure of getting settled, buying basics at the store and then checking out the neighborhood.And of course finding a free walking tour for the following day.
|The grocery store was awesome!|
|The Germans take their organs seriously|
We were able to take the tour the next day. It was once again, very informative and got us excited about what we could see in the city on our own. The history here is so intense and can be seen physically at many levels just by walking - but there is much, much more to take in regarding Germany as a whole and its role in the world today.
|The TV tower was built in East Berlin in the 60's|
|A contemplative walk through the memorial by a visitor|
|Everything but the fleas. But I am sure they were there.|
|Had to try a Currywurst. Yuck! Is all I can say.|
|Could eat spicy meatballs and peppers in a fresh wrap all day|
|Travel Planner at work using three computers!|
Growing up, I never thought that apartheid would end in South Africa in my lifetime nor could I envision the collapse of the Soviet Union or the fall of the Berlin Wall. Of course we now know that all three came to pass so it was great to spend a week in Berlin to see first hand what a unified city and country look like.
The Berlin Wall went up in 1961 and came down in 1989. During that time, the Eastern part of the city sort of went into a deep freeze while the Western modernized with the rest of Europe. Our apartment was in the area that was in the former "East Berlin" and even today, that part of the city still lags behind the rest of the city. The buildings are more often tagged with graffiti and they somehow have a depressingly drab Soviet style appearance. Having said that, the neighborhood we stayed in was alive and vibrant with shops, bars, restaurants and nightlife.
Back in 1969, when I was racing in Europe I had a chance to race in what was then East Germany. I remember how scary the border crossing was as we went through the checkpoint with our vans and race cars. The good news is that all of that is in the past so it was exciting to see a united Germany again. If you ever have a chance to visit Berlin, I'd recommend it.
|We're having a wonderful adventure - thanks for following along.|
Happy to be moving on to warmer temperatures in Italy. Milan is our next stop. Ciao!
(celebrated our 35th Wedding Anniversary yesterday - what a blessing)