Monday, March 30, 2009

From West to East and Back - Day 8 (Berlin)

David and Carolyn were off early this morning to get to the trade show. After Madeline woke, Jeff, Madeline and I headed to a local corner grocery store to pick up some items for our flats for the week (Our flat is in the former West Berlin). Afterward Jeff, Madeline and I took off to explore the streets of Berlin while our spouses were hard at work.

I just have to say that I walked my butt off! I missed David, not only because he is my hubbie, but also because he is a walking encyclopedia. It would've been nice to get some insight as to some of the things I was looking at. Yet, Jeff was a nice companion and a huge help (and great sport) with Madeline. On the walk, we passed this nice monument. I had no idea what it was but after the fact David told me that he thinks it is a Victory Column to commemorate the defeat of Napoleon. (The first photo on top is of Madeline and me sitting on a part of the Column.)

After at a ton of walking we decided to cheat a bit to shorten our trip to the Brandenburg Gate by catching one of those bike trolleys. It was a nice break for my feet and Madeline thought it was pretty nifty. The trolley's biker was able to point out some things but with his thick German accent it was very hard to understand him. Here Madeline and I are just on the other side of the Gate (former East Berlin). Below, we are standing in front of the Brandenburg Gate.....or as David pointed out, where 20 years ago we would've been shot for standing there. At this point, the only thing that gave evidence of the Berlin Wall ever existing was a small brick path in the road that followed the path of the Wall.
Once in the former East Berlin, we did a tiny bit of souvenir shopping. We continued walking down the main road that began at the gate and came across the Berliner Dome (Berlin Cathedral). The Cathedral just kind of crept up on you as you exited a clearing in the streetscape. The sudden massive building that popped up in front of me was breathtaking. Luckily were were able to take some photos inside so I have included a few below. Also, you were able to climb the dome as David and I did in London (interior only). This time, I was brave enough to not only climb the 267 stairs but also go outside with Madeline. The exterior was well secured and Madeline behaved nicely.

Exterior of Berliner Dome

Interior of Berliner Dome (Main Altar)
Looking up into the Dome

On the Dome (The Tower in the background is the Berliner Fernsehturm, a television tower.
After leaving the Berliner Dome, I let Madeline run around in some green space outside. I included some video but I left it to post at the very bottom of this blog entry. Excuse the video as I was being stupid while trying to operate the video function of my camera.

We headed back up to Brandenberg Gate and visited a Holocaust Memorial. The Memorial occupies 205,000 square feet of space near the Brandenberg Gate.
Afterward, Jeff, Madeline and I were so far away from our flats that we ended up catching a taxi back. We reconnected with David and Carolyn and headed out to a true German resturant. The food was gut-bustin' meat and potato-type food and the German beer was flowin' Below is a photo of David and Jeff and our gut-bustin' meal. Don't the guys look so proud of their meat?? (I didn't actually just type that last question, did I?) Anyway, it is way past my bedtime here.....must rest up for another day of sightseeing.

Here's the video....


Kelly said...

Thanks for the shots of green grass, you know my grass isn't completely green yet - so that was a nice view. Just teasing you!!! I am enjoying all your adventures. Can't wait to hear all about it when you return!

Whimsical Creations said...

WOW!! What a fabulous trip. I had a great time at scrap and spa, but being in europe doesn't compare to it. Can't wait to see all your pictures when you scrapbook them.

=D melanie

Amy said...

Scrap....yep, I'll get around to these photo in 2015 :-) Glad you had fun at scrap and spa. I do hope to be able to go next year!