[September 2018] – This was my first visit to Germany – and I had to include Berlin. In addition to seeing the famous monuments and sights, my goal was to visit specific artifacts in Berlin’s famous museums.
I had selected a hotel just on the east side of the Spree River close to museum island – yes, there is an island containing multiple museums! The hotel was also a short walk from Alexanderplatz and the red Rotus Rathaus building – town hall – which is also featured in my new favorite TV series Babylon Berlin.
As for the many memorials to German history, what struck me the most were the “stumbling stones”. Strolling about East Berlin, I occasionally looked down and spotted one of these brass cobblestones containing the name, date and which prison the victim had been taken – marking the spot the person had last resided. The art installation is another of the many reminders of Germany’s dreadful past. These stones (and monuments) are like reality checks, giving the country and its people another level of respect for owning that awful time. As if making sure not to ever let anything like it happen again. And especially relevant in the current global political climate.
WHAT DID I EAT?
Prior to my visit, I researched foods of Berlin and discovered a small, local butcher stand called the Kumple and Keule in the Markthalle Neun food hall. There I noshed on one of the most delicious bratwurst sausages and fell in love. And yes, of course it paired perfectly well with a pilsner.
On the flip side, one of the most interesting Berlin eats was a quick-bite called Currywurst – a popular street food made of grilled/boiled pork sausage, sliced, then smothered in curry-flavored ketchup, and topped with a dusting of curry.