My history knowledge has obviously been returned to the teachers, and I am trying hard to recall any data still leftover in my brains. Fortunately last night, I joined my friends at a rooftop party by The Wall, and received a good (very brief) refresher.
I had remarked that Berlin has no character, because of the spaces I have spent in since my arrival. I was really surprised, as I had expected this city to be really vibrant and exciting with many subcultures. I was even more disappointed during my meeting earlier in the day, when I was told I am staying at the center (mitte/ middle) already. I was also brief about the difference between East and West, and that I can tell I am living in the East because of the tram network. Ignoramus me thought that means the East was the more fortunate side because they could afford putting in tram infrastructure will the West could only afford buses.
Hahaha. How wrong I was. The West did not have trams because they were the rich side during the period, and they were more into private cars rather than public transport! (Alright, feel me to call me out if I am wrong, I intend to do all my fact checking only when I’m back in Singapore end of the month.)
That as a big big reminder to not intentionally skip the history aspect of travelling, for it is a huge part of the evolution and derivation of cultures. Well, I was originally really afraid of seeing the history of the dark times here, as I did used to get nauseated during history class just from the mere thought of people killing people. (And then I had to work in Phnom Penh, how ironic. Universe obviously has some lesson to teach here.)
So … today I just sauntered and roamed around the other city of the Berlin, and indeed it had a lot more character. Still old buildings galore, and cathedrals galore, but here they are called Doms, and seeing the architecture, yes, they are very Doms, in fact.
I have stopped for a huge cup of sorbet, and for a biere, enroute to Checkpoint Charlie. Will post photos when I get back to my room!