July 3, 2012

Willkommen in Berlin!

I have arrived in Berlin! The group and I landed here on Friday, and I'm just now getting the chance to sit down and write. It's been a crazy and exhausting first few days. Friday was definitely subpar. We got here around lunch time then went on a walking tour of the area around our hotel. At this point I had been in airports/on planes for 24 hours. I just wanted to sleep and so did everybody else. But we sucked it up and explored the area. 

Saturday we went on a bus tour of the city of Berlin. The actual tour wasn't too amazing. I thought we would stop at certain places to get out of the bus and take pictures, but we ended up staying in the bus the whole time, so most of my pictures aren't that great. But after the tour we split off into our own groups and walked around the city.

Berliner Dom

The Altes Museum

The Spree River

The Reichstag - German Parliament

Sunday we went to the town of Potsdam, which is about 30 minutes away from Berlin. In the morning we split off into groups again. One of the professors ended up walking with us, so he was able to guide us around the town. Potsdam is so pretty. It's not actually part of Berlin (it's in Brandenburg), but I like to think of it as the "Buckhead" of Berlin.

In the afternoon, everybody met back up, and we visited Sans Souci, the palace of Frederick the Great. It was absolutely gorgeous. It's only one level, but it doesn't take away from it's beauty. And the grounds were awesome, too. The palace is built on a hill, so it looks over the gardens and into the town of Potsdam.

This is the inside of the palace. We weren't allowed to take pictures, so this is all I was able to get. But you can still see how extravagant the inside of the palace is. I'd say it's gaudy, but I guess whatever floats your boat.

Frederick's grave

On the bus ride from the airport to the hotel on Friday I noticed that there was a ton of graffiti around Berlin. At first I thought it was trashy. I was looking forward to living in a beautiful city, and I come to Berlin to see spray paint art everywhere. But now that I've been here a few days I've decided that the graffiti adds to the character and uniqueness of Berlin. I know when I go home the first thing I'm going to think is, "Where's all the graffiti?"

Hopefully I'll be getting into a routine soon so I'll be able to post a little better. Yesterday was our first day of classes, and today was our first field trip day. I'll update soon about this week and all that's been happening. Be sure to check back here for more posts from Berlin!

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