Euro04: Berlin + Prague

Brandenburger Tor Close-Up

Wednesday, March 10th, 3:52PM

Through the Brandenburg Gate.

I remember Frau Hastay telling the story of the Quadriga statue (of the four horses pulling the chariot up on top) during the Cold War. She claimed that the Russians reversed it so it would look out to the east side of the city. That sounds great, and old photographs back up that it did indeed face east during the time the city was riven... But it still faces east. One would think that the horses would've been flipped back to the west, their eastward position considered a symbol of Russian interference or whatever.

My camera actually ran out of battery power at this point (!), so I couldn't take any more shots until I got back to Brenna's place where I could charge it back up. Ugh.

So, though I have no photographic evidence, I walked up towards the Reichstag and around to the left of the building, to the imposing main steps leading up to the main entrance (above which is written in large, gothic lettering: "Dem Deutschen Volke" -- "For the German People"). The steps lead down to a long lawn area with the Kanzleramt on one side and the Tiergarten on the other. I walked around and through the government buildings and eventually reached the river, where I got a bit lost. So much construction has been happening that parts of the government area are a total mess -- with roads and sidewalks dead-ending into constructions sites, mostly. So I got lost and eventually found myself back on the East side where I stopped into a little bookshop to use the restroom before finally orienting myself and working my way back to the metro.

I got back to the apartment at about 5PM and put my camera battery back in the charger.