Saturday, July 09, 2011

Ishtar Gate to Golden Elsa

The boys had played hard while Maddie and I finished up in the museum.
We stopped and had lunch at one of the riverside "beaches". It was such pleasant weather and we certainly deserved it after the cold, rainy weekend we had to welcome us here.
We took touristy pictures (the joke here is that while JFK thought he was expressing solidarity with the people, a Berliner is a jelly donut).
I'm not sure if he was checking for athlete's foot or playing This Little Piggy. He was mostly happy to be free of his stroller.
Better than a poke in the eye. This was in the Nicolai quarter which was the section that the Soviets gussied up in East Berlin. It is very quaint and right by the river.
We visited the Nicolaikirche to help Rob with his class on Medieval Architecture.
They say that the mortar in Berlin never dries. Certainly true right now. This whole section of town is torn up and they're currently stuck because they found critically important ruins right where they had planned to put the U-bahn.
Then we jumped a boat tour on the Spree. It was pleasant to sit down and be passive for a moment. Behind Sebastian is the Reichstag, the parliament building which will be another visit on another day.
Maddie in front of another riverside "beach".
We got off in the middle of the Tiergarten, a huge park like Central or Golden Gate which used to be for royal hunting. We've actually seen a few rabbits hopping around and many, many birds. I was surprised to see anything but nearly naked sunbathers and grilling Turks.
Then we happened upon another playground and we always stop to play when we find one.
Then we climbed to the top of the victory column, the famous angel from Wings of Desire. In this picture of the view looking east, you can see (L to R) the TV tower, the Berlin Cathedral, the Red Rathaus (city hall), The Brandenburg Gate, The Humbolt Box (blue), The Hotel Adlon (green roof) and the Nicolaikirche (witch hat).
Sebastian and Maddie contemplating the victory angel.
There she is, looking over the center of Berlin and "the Great Star" which is a grand name for a traffic circle.
Going back down the stairs was more difficult but it did go faster.
We looked at the mosaics around the first gallery.
And managed a smile even after that whole day! Joss conked out in his stroller on the way home and didn't wake up until 4:00am asking for food! Still not quite ready to give up a nap, that one.

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