When? WHEN? Ich bin hungrig!
I spent a ton of time in the hostel commons yesterday. After getting all caught up on posting pictures and updating my blog, I basically sat and read on my Kindle for a few hours. There is really nothing I feel I could have gained from visiting the city again. I ventured out about 1800 to the corner shop for a delicious caprese salad for dinner. Other than that, I had to wait until 2345 for the bus to arrive. Oddly enough, it was a bit early this time, and quite empty as well. I picked myself a nice comfy window seat and slept most of the way. We had a few short stop-overs and eventually the bus filled up. I couldn’t stretch out as much, but I still did manage to get a sold 8 in last night. 8 hours. Of sleep.
Berlin is a crazy city. Nothing too crazy, though. Once I FOUND the metro it was pretty simple to figure it out, even switching from U1 – U2 was a breeze. I got to my new home for the next few days, Sunflower Hostel, at around 0800, but check-in wasn’t until 1600. So I walked for eight hours. Except for taking a quick lunch break, I really walked around a good portion of the city by the time check-in rolled around. I started from where the U1 stops, at Warschauer Strasse. From there I walked north-west into the center of downtown. There is a cute pedestrian shopping center, right at the base of the Berliner Fernsehturm. I really wanted to go to the top of the TV tower, but the lines were long and I didn’t think it would be worth the 17 Euro admission. I headed west from there to the Brandenburg Gate and the Reichstag, then south a few blocks to a a section of demolished Wall that had a “topography of terror exhibition.” I followed the line on the map indicating the position of the Wall before the reunification of Germany. This path eventually brought me through the Checkpoint Charlie, across the River Spree and past a section of wall that was left intact, complete with murals painted on by disparate Germans.
From there I headed back to the hostel. From what little experience I have with this particular hostel, it seems to be a nice enough place. It was pretty cheap (I think maybe 70 Euro for four nights) and offers free breakfast. The commons looks like an acceptable place to hang out and meet friends. There’s also a bar on premises – although I have had barely any alcohol on this entire trip.
Berlin is the biggest city I have visited during this trip. I am going to have to look into getting a 3-day transportation pass. That will cut down drastically the time it takes to get from one landmark to another. I don’t really want to spend 8+ hours walking every day. I could rent a bike, but I think they start at 10 Euro each days and get more expensive from there. As long as I can figure out the above-ground public transportation routes, it would behoove me to get a Berlin Pass tomorrow.
There are several places I would like to have seen this evening, if I could have mustered up the energy. There is a statue a little south of my hostel called the Molecule Man, courtesy of an American artist. On my Wall-walk approaching the river I ran into a little “commune” that I wanted badly to check out. Now that I have some more information I will definitely go back tomorrow. YAAM has different shows and vendors each night and seems like a generally awesome place to hang out. It stands for “Young African Art Market,” and I’m really looking forward to getting a bit more information tomorrow. They were having some type of special tonight, but I just don’t think I have it in me to walk the extra several kilometers this evening.
So I put on some laundry (finally) and went out for dinner. Eventually I decided on schnitzel, a thin fried pork filet with salad and french fries. It was full of deliciousness. Returning home I realized that my clothes came out of the dryer seemingly less dry than when I put them in. And don’t ask, Angie, the big sticker on the front said it was a dryer, not a washer. So all my clothes (well, almost) are hanging up in various places around the dorm room. Word to the wise: if you ever stay in Sunflower Hostel in Berlin, don’t waste money on the dryers.
I feel that brings us all up to date. Don’t forget to check out my other websites.
Search for my name on Flickr if we aren’t Facebook friends so you can see my pics. Or just add me on facebook: Brian Gregory Cosey. I have another blog site, therihla.com, but right now it is almost identical to this one. Hopefully that will change soon, at which point reading both of them will be of the utmost importance.