Archive for August 1, 2010

August 1 – Berlin (25 km, 16 miles)

Posted in On the Road on August 1, 2010 by Scott McGee

Today was pretty much a rest day. I got up around 7:00 am and was able to access Werner’s WIFI signal in order to finally check e-mail and get somewhat caught up on posting updates to OTR. After breakfast Werner and I rode our bikes to the nearest train station and purchased tickets for the eastern side of Berlin. After about a 30 minute ride we unloaded our bikes from the train and began a leisurely pedal through the center of Berlin back to Werner’s house.

.

A section of the Berlin wall.

.

We saw the typical sights that every first-time visitor must see – the Reichstag, the Berlin Wall, Brandenburg Gate, etc., etc., and stopped at a nice little outdoor café along the river to have a cold German beer in the warm sunshine, while watching an endless procession of filled-to-capacity tour boats passing by – very nice. At one point we passed by the Prime Minister’s residence – equivalent to the White House in the U.S. While there was a fence around it, I was amazed at how close it was to the building – only about 10 meters or so. I’m sure there were security cameras scanning the sidewalks, but there wasn’t the overpowering sense of being watched that you get when you’re near the White House, with it’s rooftop armed marksmen ready to takeout any potential invaders.

.

A church in central Berlin.

.

Werner and his wife Donia live in the northwest part of Berlin, in a very nice, heavily wooded area with numerous parks and bike trails. It was very easy to get around by bike, and all the drivers were very courteous to bikers, pausing to let us pass in front of them. This is something that would rarely occur in Anchorage.

Overall, today was a nice break from 10-12 hours on the road. Tomorrow I’ll head south toward my next major stop – Munich.