Friday, March 12, 2010
Thurs., March 11, 2010: Peace for the Present
(Karannina) After a nice long sleep, we walk over to our breakfast, which is crowded with people. Then we go to the Brandenburg Gate: the Goddess of Peace. Hitler used it as a Goddess of Victory to celebrate his conquests the wrong way. We crossed the street where the Berliner Mauer also known as the Berlin Wall, once stood. Alexander and I climbed part of the Berlin Wall. By the river we saw memorials dedicated to the people who tried to cross from the east to the west by swimming, but while swimming they were shot and died. We walk to the Reichstag where Germany makes political decisions. We never got to climb the glass dome, since they were cleaning it ☹. The outside of the building had the writing “Das Deutsche Volk” which means for the German people. The future of Germany looks promising as you walk into the huge Reichstag with the glass dome representing that decisions are made so that it is not a secret to the rest of Germany and the world – transparency. Inside the Brandenburg gate was a Room of Silence, dedicated to the original gate for peace. We kept the silence and contemplated of all the injustices that almost brought the world to a crisis and continues to bring countries to injustices. We then walked among 2771 concrete slabs of different sizes representing all the Jews who have been murdered when Hitler ruled. Underneath the field of these slabs of concrete, we walked through an underground building that depicted Jews of all ages who were either killed, murdered, or escaped the concentration camps. I felt very sad for the Jews, especially the child who wrote to her father that she did not want to die, yet she knew she would be. After an emotional experience, we had a bit of a family discussion to make a transition before going out to eat. We enjoyed curry wurst and pomme frit which was recommended by Onkel Klaus (thanks) and special Berliner slush. Dad had a very strange grapefruit beer. On our way back to Unte der Lindenbaum Strasse, we went by the Adlon Hotel where Michael Jackson dangled his baby over the second balcony and Charlie Chaplin stayed there many years earlier. We saw ice sculptures, one was an aquarium with real frozen fish in action. Next, we saw a video of the history of how the Berlin Mauer was build and chiseled down. Then we went to Friedenstrasse and Jaeger Strasse and saw the many expensive fashion shops. One watch was E96,000 ($150,000 Canadian dollars), one skirt was E3200, E800 sandals, and one tiny bottle of perfume E81. Mom is so strong, that she lifted a Mini Cooper :) From here we went to Checkpoint Charlie, where the allied forces allowed East Germans entrance into West Berlin. Then we saw 0.5 km section of the original wall with parts that had been chiseled off as high as a person could reach. After a short visit to the grocery store, Hit, we had supper and wrote this blog. Take a look at all the Berliner Bears that we saw. Oh, Alexander wanted to help clean the rubble from the Berlin Streets. My eyes are completely tired and I am ready to crash.