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July 30, 2007

Boat trip on the Spree

Mausi had to go on a business trip to Berlin this week. As business was conducted successfully during the day Mausi felt entitled to a little fun in the evening, hopped onto a public transport and went to see that part of Berlin where the governmental buildings are situated. The last time she went there most of them were still under construction. The finished buildings took Mausi's breath away - they are huge and do look impressive. As intended, no doubt.

The Reichstag, the building that houses the German Parliament, seen from the river

Mausi went for an hour's cruise on the river Spree in the warm evening sunshine. A perfect ending of the day. The Spree was the former border between East and West Berlin. The Berlin Wall was about 100 m removed from the river on the East Berlin side. The 100 m strip made it much easier for the border guards to prevent people from trying to rush into the river and try to swim to West Berlin in the unlikely event that they had been able to get over the wall in the first place.

The Bode Museum on the Museum Island, named after one of its directors

The Bode Museum is one of the many museums on the so called Museum Island in Berlin. Perhaps the most famous among them is the Pergamon Museum. Bits of it can be seen behind the Bode Museum to the right. Legend says that during the last days of WW II employees of the Pergamon Museum only just prevented soldiers from tearing apart the priceless Pergamon altar and use it to reinforce the barricades. At the moment extensive renovation and restoration is going on on the museum island. Mausi is hoping for a week she can spend there one day and browse around.

Haus der Kulturen der Welt (House of the Cultures of the World)

This building is the former Congress Centre in Berlin. Originally it was the American contribution the the World Exhibition in Berlin 1957. Due to a design fault the roof caved in in the 1980's. It has been rebuilt, however, and will be housing the cultures of the world in the future. It is one of Berlin's well known sights. Berliners have a special kind of humour and are very adept at naming things. This building they call 'Die schwangere Auster' (The pregnant Oyster).

The Moltke Bridge

The so called Moltke Bridge - named after the well known Prussian Field Marshal - is one of the very few bridges in Berlin which were not destroyed during WW II. It was rebuilt a few years ago nonetheless and has now a steel core which is covered with the original sandstone. The bridge looks the way it was originally designed but also is able to withstand the demands of today's traffic. A very good idea, Mausi thinks.

Posted by Mausi at July 30, 2007 07:09 PM

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Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh... Berlin.... /me homesick for Berlin and my friends there. :-( Lovely photos though!!! Thanks for sharing. :-)

Posted by: Cindy at July 30, 2007 07:32 PM