Sunday, June 17, 2012

Wednesday 30.05: Berlin day 3

Today started off with presentations on Kreuzberg, Anhalter Bahnhof, Humboldt Universitat, Checkpoint Charlie, Friedrichstrasse and maybe a couple more.
 I got the most out of the Anhalter Bahnhof presentation, maybe because I had been hearing about it for days. It was Becky's presentation and she had been talking about it all week :) It used to be the main train station in Berlin until the new one was built. Then this one was used mostly for trains heading south out of the country. During the second world war it was used to send Jews to concentration camps across Europe. It was bombed by the Americans and British. Kind of cool how it ties into our Jews in Berlin topic!

 Behind the Anhalter Bahnhof was a sportplatz. I felt like it was kind of rude to build something like that this close to something like the Anhalter Bahnhof. I understand needing to use the space, but there needs to be some kind of sacred area. At least the sportplatz was named after a Jewish athlete who was killed in the holocaust. That was kinda cool.

 After all the presentations, we split back into our groups. Becky and I had brought bread and nutella along for lunch and the plan was to eat that... until we found crepes. It was cold and windy, so crepes sounded amazing. And amazing they were. Becky and I have a thing for crepes :)
After our crepes we decided to head to the synagogue. Nick went back to the hostel to work on homework so it was just Thomas, Becky and me. In all honesty, the synagogue was kind of a bust. We learned that it was bombed and then rebuilt and then purposely bombed again. Some parts of the original synagogue have been found among the rubble. The part that used to be the worship area was never rebuilt. You can look outside and see where it was, but it is no longer there. We went up into the dome, where there wasn't much other than a great view. There were boards with different buildings you could see in the skyline and we worked really hard to find all of them!

Through out Berlin (and most of Germany) you can find these little stones in the sidewalk. They are dedicated to victims of the holocaust who had lived in nearby houses. It has the person's name, the years they were alive, and where they were sent and how they died.

When we got back to the hostel, it was somewhat early. The other groups were still out seeing things for their topic, but because we had done so much the day before we didn't have that much to do today. Nick, Becky and I went across the street to get currywurst. 2 currywurst plus fries for 3,20 euros. Oh yeah. It was delicious and filling and overall amazing. I was super stoked.
Anderson had offered to go to a cafe or somewhere with whoever wanted to just sit around and talk in german. It ended up being Dustin, Sara, Nick, Krzysztof, Becky and myself, well and Anderson. We found a place to sit outside at a cafe/restaurant and had a drink and some of the group had food. We talked about random stuff, laughed, and just had a great time. Becky and I got ice cream on the way back :) We love our ice cream. Anderson, Nick and Krzysztof decided they were going to go to a bar. Becky and I went back to our room. And I'm pretty sure I fell asleep early... again. Becky kind of hated me for that...

Happy: crepes and ice cream
Crappy: it was cold and windy and the synagogue wasn't nearly as cool as I had hoped

Lots of love from Germany!!

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