Wednesday, October 31, 2007


10-28-07: I was lucky to have the chance to visit Berlin twice this week. We visited the East Side Gallery, which is the remains of the Berlin wall, painted with murals and graffiti. We took a cast photo in front of the Brandenburg gate, and visited the memorial to the murdered Jews of Europe. The memorial is incredibly powerful, and easy to lose yourself in. Long rows of columns, that as you walk to the center begin to tower above your head, until they are four meters above you. You lose everyone else, and just catch glimpses of people walking among the other columns… the symbolism was overwhelming to me, I felt this panic of not being able to find my group again, and thinking I would see them in the distance, but only a glimpse, and if I ran to catch them, I would only be successful if they hadn’t turned. And the columns were so wide, it hid people and was quickly disorienting. And the museum underneath the memorial was really well-done, though it was exhausting, as all Holocaust memorials are. Though somehow, I feel like its one of those things that I need to spend time doing, taking time out of my rich and bountiful life to remember that sick tragedy and all those lost lives. If you are ever in Berlin, this memorial is a must-see.

And yesterday on our free day, Joern took us around his old neighborhood in Berlin. We visited a flea market, had a tour of the Jewish Museum of Berlin that focused on a comparison of Judaism and Islam (which was fascinating) and then had dinner at his favorite Italian restaurant. Homemade fettuchini with pumpkin and sautĂ©ed onions, buffalo mozzarella with truffle oil and basil, antipasto with roasted eggplant & pinenuts, octopus with tomatoes, potato soufflĂ©, and many other delectable flavors. It was a relaxing dinner, and a nice end to our very busy week in Prenzlau. The only thing I was disappointed about was that we got back too late for me to call home. I am grateful for the emails and photos that you send—Kato, I love the pink hair!

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