A little bit of history and a little bit of exploration.

Sunday was an exciting day of history and sightseeing with Lisa Geuther-Sharpe from Berlin Original Walks. She was a fantastic tour guide who knew wonderful bits about Berlin’s history that really provided a great insight into the personality of the city. I fell in love with the places we visited, and knowing the history behind them made it even more entrancing.

 

Here is one of the beautiful statues that were hidden in a bunker during World War II.

Here is one of the beautiful statues that was hidden in a bunker during World War II.

 

Another beautiful building we saw while on the walking tour.

Another beautiful building we saw while on the walking tour.

As part of the tour, we stopped at the Holocaust memorial called Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe. It was a heavy and thought-provoking creation, and the pictures hopefully display some of the many feelings evoked from wandering through the outside memorial.

 

The Memorial for the Murdered Jews of Europe.

The Memorial for the Murdered Jews of Europe.

 

This proves that there is always hope for life.

This proves that there is always hope for life.

When we got to the Brandenburg Gate, we took a group photo!

 

Our group at the Brandenburg Gate!

Our group at the Brandenburg Gate!

Towards the end of our tour, we walked along one of the areas where the outer Berlin Wall once stood. We saw remnants of the wall across one of the only remaining Nazi buildings, and it was hard to picture the vast obstacle of concrete, wire and blockades that kept many desperate East Berliners from seeking the freedom they were desperate for in West Berlin. We saw the roof of the Nazi building where an engineer who worked in the building designed a plan to escape East Berlin with his wife and son. With help from some West Berlin friends and a long cable connected from the roof to the free side of the wall, the engineer was able to successfully escape with his family in an attempt that later became a famous event in the eyes of both East and West Berliners.

We then crossed over a continuous line of bricks that represent where the outer wall once stood, and we passed into the former West Berlin. 

 

Here I am standing in both the former East and West Berlin.

Here I am standing in both the former East and West Berlin.

The tour ended at Checkpoint Charlie and I decided to take a picture with the guards (really actors). We then ate lunch at a small cafeteria, where I had falafels!

 

Here I am with the "soldiers" at Checkpoint Charlie.

Here I am with the "soldiers" at Checkpoint Charlie.

Later, we headed to Potsdamer Platz and the Sony Center to meet a 24-year-old German woman, Stine, and her sister, Isabelle. They both were amazingly sweet and very helpful with ideas for contacts for our stories. I look forward to hanging out with her again later this week.

 

This is the top of the outside Sony Center in Potsdamer Platz.

This is the top of the outside Sony Center in Potsdamer Platz.

As for today, we finally got some free time to explore the city on our own and search for contact ideas. Lauren, Kelly, Emily and I decided to go searching for some bookshops and eat at a vegetarian restaurant called Gorilla on Knesebeckstrasse in Charlottenberg. The food was AMAZING! I had minestrone soup and a hummus wrap with tofu. I even had black assam tea, yummy. On the way back, we saw some great art on the wall while waiting for the S-Bahn.

 

There is always amazing art on and around the walls of the U-Bahn and S-Bahn stations.

There is always amazing art on and around the walls of the U-Bahn and S-Bahn stations.

Before dinner, we met with Franka Bruns, a native german and freelance photojournalist in Berlin who has studied at Ohio Univeristy. She was a great inspiration to us all, and had very interesting insight into the world of photojournalism both in the U.S. and Berlin.

We had a group dinner at a Thai restaurant that was just down the street from our hotel. We had fun relaxing and talking about our possible story ideas, and then we headed back to the hotel to work on our blogs. I hope to have some great pictures after tomorrow, when we finally do our bike tour!!!

 

Emily, Lauren, me and Kelly pose for a picture at the Thai restaurant. The photo was taken by professor John Freeman.

Emily, Lauren, me and Kelly pose for a picture at the Thai restaurant. The photo was taken by professor John Freeman.

Guten Nacht!   (Good night!)

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~ by friedlichewelt on May 18, 2009.

3 Responses to “A little bit of history and a little bit of exploration.”

  1. Great photos. I love public art. Looks like a great group of travellers, too. Enjoy the adventure.

  2. Looks like your having a great time in Berlin. It’s nice to hear what you’re doing and to see your photos. All the best.

    • Thank you! Yes, I’m loving it here, it’s a beautiful city with lots to do. I hope you enjoy my posts and pictures!

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