Sunday October 19, 2014
The day started with a trip to Mauer park which is only a few blocks away. There was a big flea market there. It had to be a mile long and seven or eight rows of stalls. Typical of Europe there was a man charging .50 euros to use the portapotty. There was a lot of beautiful furniture and household items but I don't have room for that stuff but it was fun looking. There were some great street musicians around as well so a great time.
I headed towards downtown Berlin thinking that I would just wing it and decide as I went what I would see. Within minutes I had found the best and worst of Berlin. For the next two hours I walked the Berlin Wall. It was the saddest thing I have ever experienced. In the ground for about ten blocks is a bronze line that shows were the wall stood, were escape tunnels were dug, where the guard towers were, where the Jewish cemetery was desecrated, where the church was torn down. There is a wall of the people who died trying to escape. The other day I said that Anne Frank house was moving, well this was devastating. Anne died before I was born but the wall was in my era. I was a teen when it when up and in my 40's when it came down. The tears flowed today as I remembered those times. There is both audio and postures to go with the line. I have posted some of the pictures.
On to something a little happier. I continued on into downtown Berlin heading for the Brandenburg Gate. When I reached the Spree river I decided I needed some fun so I took a boat tour. It was an hour long and very interesting. Most of the government buildings are on either side of the Spree.
Funny item for the day. When Kennedy said "Ich bein een Berliner" half of Berlin was laughing because a Berliner is the name of a doughnut. Of course the guide also pointed out the buildings destroyed in the war or by the wall going up, but by then the sun was shining and things didn't seem so dismal.
On to the Brandenburg Gate. I found it. It is beautiful. Everyone was waiting for the illumination, so of course I waited too. Vanilla roodiboos tea from Starbucks kept me warm. It started about 6:30 so I headed home by 7:00.
Food for the day. Cherry Danish and roodiboos tea, lunch was bratwurst on a bun and fresh strawberries for dessert. Supper was pizza and a glass of wine.