Walking through Berlin
I spent most of the day by myself which was kind of nice. Had a desire to begin at a farmers market. I ended up going to the one at Kollwitzplatz that happens on Thursday and the bigger one on Saturday. I had actually been there before. It is located in a beautiful park that sits like a town square. There was meat, cheese, vegetables, flowers, food and coffee carts.
There was a man serving up a variety of sausages. I went with the classic and a sweet cabbage on the side. It was delicious.
Summer is the best season for fresh herbs and vegetables so the market smelled delicious.
I had to be at the American Embassy at 245. I was speaking to a group of women who are entrepreneurs and investors in Berlin. I had a few hours to kill. The embassy was over an hour walk but I figured I’d just start walking and see where I ended up.
Coffee was definitely needed. I walked into a small coffee shop called The Barn. It was amazing. They roast their own beans, have classes about coffee and they serve it to you in a variety of different ways. I went for a iced flat white. Absolutely perfect. They take their coffee very seriously here.
I continued walking and dropped into another store called the Happy Store. They carry young designers across the globe. None of them I had heard about before and that is always a good thing.
Continued to walk. I have passed these buildings before. I just love the old with the new. Extremely urban.
I finally made my way to the embassy with about 15 minutes to just hang out on a bench. The embassy is right next door to the Bradenburg Gate. It is really amazing just to sit there and think about the history. I remember when the Berlin wall came down. We were glued to the TV with goosebumps. We all wanted to get on a plane and be part of history.
I went to the embassy and got to talk about my career, investing, entrepreneurship, etc with a group of women. It was really something I enjoy doing and don’t do enough of. It was the wife to the US Ambassador of Germany who put this together. She has had a lot of success in her own right. She took me up stairs to meet her husband and see the views. Have to admit, it was pretty cool.
Dinner was soon. We had dinner at Schwarzwaldstuben. A relatively new restaurant that serves a new version of classic German food. Cash only. We each had schnitzel that was really good.
We started off with these appetizers to share that were a mixture of some classic German tastes. Didn’t like this as much as the schnitzel but I’d come back here on our next trip.
We left the next morning, really early but plan on being back in the fall.
Wonder weather there is a new German cuisine?On the lighter and healthier and fresh side?
Perhaps a tad lighter but not by much. Healthier? Questionable.
Was thinking what a forward thinker Alice Waters was the other day.Used to go to her restaurant, loved it but honestly at that time didn’t realize what a game changer it was.
We were there 24 years ago and have not been back. She changed the entire food chain.
The rundown building on the right would make a great music album cover for the right genre.
Your pic with the Brandenburg Gate in the background brings back memories.The Gate was built in the late 1700s and was literally a gateway into Berlin. I think it was built by Frederick William II, King of Prussia.The statue on the top is the Quadriga, which is four horses pulling the Goddess of Victory.Napoleon captured Berlin and had the statue sent to Paris in triumph. The Prussians then captured Paris and had it sent back to Berlin where it was reinstalled.When Hitler was appointed Chancellor of Germany (think this was 1933), he paraded through the Gate with his Nazis, his paramilitary brownshirts and his fledgling SS. It was a powerful picture.It was the first public display of his power and someone is supposed to have said that felt like the Devil himself had arrived.Of course, Hitler captured Paris in the war and Berlin was bombed extensively but the gate survived. The allies rebuilt the gate as a symbol of the fall of Germany and the defeat of Hitler. The Russians got this part of Berlin and the statue was mothballed to be returned later.This is where JFK said, “Ich bin ein Berliner”; and, where Reagan said, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.” Two of the most iconic sentences ever spoken by an American President in Germany.JFK was a WWII vet and his statement was a symbol of the rapprochement of Germany back into the civilized world and, it is reputed, Gorbachev heard Reagan’s thunderous demand.State had gone ape shit over Reagan’s speech, saying it was provocative. But only a guy like Reagan could have pulled that off. Obviously, it worked.Obama was planning on giving a speech there; Candidate Obama as he hadn’t yet been elected; and, Chancellor Angela Merkle turned him down saying that the Brandenburg Gate was only for Presidents, not candidates. I think he gave his speech from the Victory Column. I could be wrong about that.I remember standing looking at the Gate, it was East Berlin at the time, closing my eyes and trying to see if I could feel Hitler passing through.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…
the history there is just incredible. so much has happened in that one section of the world.