Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Berlin Germany

After a long day and night of traveling, I finally arrived in Berlin at about 10AM on the 9th of September. I napped for an hour or two here and there on the flight, but I was waiting for the food service before trying to sleep, and dinner wasn't served until near midnight I think. They served breakfast 3 or 4 hours after that, which woke me up out of a semi-sleeping state.

After taking a taxi to the Hotel Carat (recommended) on Ollenhauerstraße, I decided it'd be best to set up my bike and take a look around. I wasn't that tired surprisingly, and I knew I should stay up until night time if possible so that I could adjust to the 6 hour time difference.

After some trouble with my bike, and finding a bike shop very close to the hotel on Auguste-Viktoria-Allee, I headed the opposite direction down the street which turned into Humboldtstraße. I didn't bike for long when I noticed what looked like a park of some sort to my right. After taking a turn into the "park", I realized it was actually a cemetery. It was an incredibly well kept one, so it was very nice. I must have seen 8 different people with watering cans in random parts of the cemetery.

I went back to the hotel to get my wide angle lens because I really liked one of the churches there (last one pictured above).

When I was finished, I biked down Müllerstraße or some street nearby. There was a really cool looking building with an Apotheke (pharmacy) on the ground floor. Apotheken are nearly as common as bakeries (Bäckerei, plural Bäckereien), Imbiss (unsure of plural but they're food stands/diners), and bike shops. Of course in the inner cities bike shops aren't as common, but they seem to have a lot of them in the outer areas. Biking is extremely popular in Germany.

As I continued to bike, I somehow ended up in another cemetery..I didn't stay long though.

I biked around aimlessly for the entire day, getting lost and not caring. Most of the time I was in the Prenzlauer Berg area, though I wasn't aware at the time of course.

Below is a picture of the Prenzlauer Berg, Wasserturm, built in 1877. Today it's been renovated into an apartment complex, but I wouldn't want to live there. Between 1933-1945, the engine house in the tower was an "unofficial prison" used by the SA. The tower's considered "The unofficial symbol of Prenzlauer Berg".

Here is a church. I know nothing about it currently. I tried to research it but didn't find anything!

A random street I took a picture of..

Graffiti. I took a picture because it made a mention of the USA..not a very good message really. I believe it translates into "Against the aggression of the USA".

Just a building near the graffiti. It may be something, but I don't know what. This whole area had a gate of sorts that you entered in through, and then many of the buildings were numbered.

Here are some of the number buildings. I'll have to do research at a later date, at the moment I'm swamped with things to do.

Here is the Zeiss-Grossplanetarium.

It was starting to get dark and I think I decided to head home at this point. Unfortunately when you don't know where you are, don't speak the language well, and it's getting dark, it makes it all the more difficult to find your way. I most likely made it home between 10:30 and midnight, like I did the whole time I was in Berlin. I seemed to get lost there a lot..it's such a spread out city.

That's all for now! I explored more of Berlin on my second full day.

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