Tag Archives: Berlin

Prague, Czech Republic

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Today we are traveling to Prague.  We awoke early full of excitement for the next leg of the journey.  Of course, we had breakfast at our favorite gas station in Berlin and then headed for the Hauptbahnhof to await our train to the Czech Republic.  The train was very nice.  The first class cabin is almost empty so it is nice and quiet. We pass through beautiful countryside.  It is so green and lush here — not like our poor parched Texas.  We move to the dining car for a change of scenery and some wine.  We are now in Dresden and have stopped to allow passengers to embark and disembark it is 11:00 A.M., the wine made August sleepy and he is dozing off.  As we enter the Czech Republic the route becomes so scenic and beautiful we follow the course of a river to our left with charming villages nestled along its banks.  The hillsides are so verdant and lush.  We just passed a beautiful castle on the hillside overlooking the river.

 

We will be in Prague in one hour. We arrive in Prague and disembark our train, we make our way to the taxi stand and the driver wants to charge 980 crown to take us to the hotel — $98 U.S. dollars, we decide he is a bandit and walk away, before we get far the price has dropped to $30.00 so we keep walking and find the tourist information center. Behold — we find that the hotel is within walking distance! So away we walk and find our hotel in the midst of an old town square. We rest and change clothes to venture out. It is very beautiful here. The war has not hurt this old city.

We find a lovely traditional Czech restaurant, Nostalgie (www.restaurace-nostalgie.cz) and promptly plant ourselves on a back patio and dine on sausage cooked in vegetables with rye bread and herbed butter accompanied by a Czech beer — yummy.  We await our second course; roasted pork served with potato dumpling, cooked cabbage and bread dumplings — marvie!!!!!

 
The food was delicious, the pork cooked to perfection and the cabbage so tender and tasty. We barely spoke during the meal. Teh pastry all looked so wonderful, but we were so full from the meal we passed………….for now. We stopped at the grocer and bought some wine, water and pastries. Back to the room to relax, drink wine and eat pastries!

We decide to have breakfast at the hotel and catch the early train our of Prague. this city has been the least fun in our trip. It seems that perhaps the East has not been able to shake off the cold war. The people are dowdy, ugly and unfriendly. On to Vienna……..

Even the breakfast was sad…………….

Berlin, Germany

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We sit in our cabin on the train to Berlin with a very kinky middle-aged woman in short boots, black lace stockings, short denim shorts and a sexy black & white top, she looks ready to hit he cabaret stage, but is actually a business traveler working on her computer. We have moved to the dining car — now there is a surprise! I have a wonderful plate of Nurnberg sausages and bread whilst Augustine has his favorite Goulash Soup. We dine and sip a lovely chardonnay while the German countryside goes by. The beautiful lush green fields filled with the most beautiful dairy cows. I so love the Fatherland and the lush bounties it offers.

I must confess that this train trip has turned tedious. We expected a fast train to Berlin; however, our train stops many times with many passengers getting off and on. We finally settle in the dining car for even if it is full of the sounds of clinking dishes and many conversations; it seems calmer than the up and down of passengers and luggage. Berlin will not come soon enough for me. We arrived fine and will rest well in our large comfortable room at the Hotel Ibis. We go to the grocery store and purchase 3 bottles of wine — one of which I promptly drink and off to bed!

Awoke early and begin our adventure in Berlin. We began with a wonderful breakfast at a gas station! Yes, a gas station. Wonderful food, exceptional coffee in a nice dining area served on china! Who would have thought! We make friends with the manager who loves her new American friends.

We then hopped on the tram and headed off on our exploration. WE switched from tram to train at Alexander Station and made our way to the Brandenburg GateCheck Point Charlie. What history lies at our feet — it makes one realize how fleeting freedom can be. We watch as people walk freely back and forth from East to West and reflect on how many lost their lives attempting to cross this place. We find a young man who stamps our passports with the verfication stamps no longer necessary and gives us a day visa to cross into the West.

We sit under the flowering Linden trees and I quickly sing an old East German song “the branch of the Linden is leafy and green, the Rhine gives her gold to the sea; the morning will come with the world is mine — Tomorrow belongs to me!” We enjoy a Berliner Beer and I write post cards to the United States. We continue our walk to the Berliner Dom — a beautiful church that ws bombed during the war, and explore the crypt full of coffins from teh German Kings and Queens, many are coming apart and the crypt smells of death.

We enjoy a marvelous dinner at a sidewalk cafe: August with schnitzle and asparagus and I with knockwurst and kraut and a beautiful bottle of dry Riesling, sitting in the sun, remembering our day of exploration in Berlin. The transportation system is very interesting here. You buy a ticket that entitles you to the tram, bus and subway — both of which are necessary in order to move about the city. We explored every inch, I do believe.

Our last day in Berlin. We awoke at 6 A.M. and took a leisurely time getting ready for our day. Of course we had breakfast at our favorite cafe — the gas station! I must say the food is better than many a restaurant and the staff is so very pleasant and friendly. We hop the tram and then the train to West Berlin and find ourselves in the midst of some marathon being run in the city. We want to see the ruins of a bombed church, only to find it has been encased in aluminum for restoration!!! They do allow us in and it is spectacular.

We walk about and enter a chapel that has been constructed of the broken stained glass from the original church — what majesty shines though this glass and what pain it reflects.

We hop the train back to Alexander platz and switch to the tram to go back to the hotel.

 

 

 

 

 

We find a cafe down the street open and decide to dine at the “Do The Pop” (www.cafe-do-the-pop.de).

We sit outside with a white wine and a Berliner beer and have some luncheon, a spicy carrot soup and wonderful German bread.