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BERLIN

August 2, 2011

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It’s axiomatic that the Brandenburg Gate is the one image that means Berlin to the rest of the world, so let’s get this over with. There is much history behind the Gate, and you can look it up if you’re interested.

Suffice to say that it’s the eastern terminus to the Tiergarten, a big and apparently beautiful park that sits in the middle of Berlin proper, and serves a focal point for the rest of the city, at least for us. We’re lucky and happy to be in walking distance of the park, but haven’t had time to explore much of it yet.

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The building on the right is our temporary home for a couple of nights, the Park Inn, situated on the Alexanderplatz, in the heart of what used to be East Berlin.

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Though our digs were rather cozy (small), they were also private, secure, and had restroom facilities, and the free breakfast was not to be believed. On the other hand, they were about four times as much as our present accommodations, to which we hied via the omnibus:

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Everybody who’s anybody uses the bus. I might mention that it rained, lightly but pretty much constantly, until Aug. 2.

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That didn’t stop the faithful wurst vendor from the completion of his appointed rounds, though. These poor schlemiels are out on the platz selling sausages, rain or shine. They’re self contained, stove and all.

This might be a good time to mention that peculiarly Berlinish delicacy, unaccountably beloved by the natives, called the currywurst. This is nothing more than a sausage drenched in some kind of tomato sauce, sprinkled with curry powder, and served up with fries. There’s even a currywurst museum, for God’s sake. Ich es verstehe nicht, and I doubt you’ll see it in a Der Weinerschnitzel near you anytime soon.

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Here’s our current pied-a-terre, the Berlin Youth Hostel. Clean, close to lots of good stuff, and what they call reasonable. I’ve seen my share of YHs in a former life, and this stacks up pretty well – decent free breakfast, also cheap evening meal, laundromat on the premises, and the snack bar serves beer and wine at all hours. Family-friendly, too.

More on the morrow…

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4 Comments
  1. Alyssa permalink

    Great! Keep the photos and commentary coming! (I tried the currywurst and I won’t need to do that again…) If you see leberkase, you might like that–the best spam/bologna mixture around. Served warm as a sandwich with some spicy mustard…mmm…

  2. Kathryne Horner permalink

    How nice of you to take us on your trip!!! Could you please make the photos LARGER? 🙂
    How’s the food-other than the currywurst? ~Kathryne

  3. Alright!! It looks gorgeous and the weather seems to have cleared up a bit, so that’s nice. I love the expression of the wurst man. Any way to make the pix bigger upon clickage? Have a great rest of the week!

  4. Sue Norton permalink

    Jane sent out the means to get to your blog. I have enjoyed your very interesting trip. I didn’t know that the ipad has a sim card. I just got one which of course I have only used in the states. Write more, please, Sue Norton

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