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We love Our Peace Artwork

DeutschAkademie
Berlin, am 11. November 2016

You can’t walk pass a big wooden beams cross kinda artwork without noticing it. It lies in between Rosenthaler Strasse and Kleine Rosenthaler Strasse, close to Hackescher Markt. This artwork represents the real beach obstacles that were used as a defense mechanism by the Soviets during World War 2. The real beach obstacles is called Czech hedgehog, as it was invented by the Czechoslovakia,  were made out of metal and is used effectively to keep war tanks from getting through their line of defense on their shores. What this artwork symbolizes is huge. And Berlin is surely strong in promoting  art on every corner of its city. Just find one yourself that strikes you dearly when you take your light walk:), and I can assure you once you do deeper research on that particular peace of display, you will find more connection with this city.

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A Water Excursion- Around the Müggelsee, Berlin’s largest Lake

DeutschAkademie
Berlin, am

Berlin is blessed with a great city vibrant, lovely art scene and offers many different activities through its strategic location, surrounded by ample nature and landscapes including water excursions. This time I am fortunate to be given yet another exciting adventure, to take the 5 hours boat ride around Berlin’s largest lake, Müggelsee. It is about four and a half km in length with a two and a half kilometer wide, and at its depth is eight meters at its deepest. Our adventure began from the water arm by the town called Grünau, taking the boat out through Dahme and Müggelseedamm, before entering into the lake. It took us about 2 hours to get to the lake from where we started. And the view was nice, from having the scenery of rows of privately owned houses with privately owned boats to a regatta strips for some boat racing competition to smaller boathouses and we passed some of a worth mentioning buildings like the Museum of Decorative Arts in Köpenick district. Once we reached the lake, it was such a stillness atmosphere that we were just sitting quietly watching absorbing the view. Since it was already in Fall, not that many people were around the lake, so having the lake just to ourselves was surreal. We realized that our fuel was not enough to lead us back, so we made a stop near a town called  Erkner. We docked our boat and some of us walked to a petrol station while some left in the boat to keep an eye on it. It didn’t take us long before we continue our journey into SeddinSee and back to Dahme. I look forward to more of the boat adventure.  15

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Prague Castle: Only 4 hours from Berlin

DeutschAkademie
Berlin, am

Behind me stood the famous castle in Prague, in its old town city. The city is romantic. The city is beautiful. The city is packed with tourists. But from where I was standing, it seems like I got the best location for some breathing and ‚un-rushed‘ moments. And if you are similar like me, who prefers quiet time and quality in discovery the city, the old town is not your place. Or more like, I needed to find spaces within that part of town to be able to enjoy the beauty of the city. Don’t get me wrong, there are a lot that you can enjoy here. But you need to know what you want to really consume the best of Prague. And it is only 4 hours away by train from Berlin. And we got a cheap train ticket too. It cost us only €60 per person for a return ticket. We decided to stay for 4 nights for a few reasons. Mainly because it is in Autumn season, so time is pretty limited and secondly, so that we could enjoy not just the areas that are filled up with tourists, but we want to also have time to go out from the old town and meet the locals. And I can recommend Karlin, an area in Prague 8, next to where the usual tourist spots are, in Prague 1.

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The Gold Man

DeutschAkademie
Berlin, am

I first noticed this ‚Gold-Man‘ in San Francisco. That was in 2006 when I further my Master’s study there for 3 years. I have never seen a man, painted in Gold before, or in San Francisco’s version, Silver, sometimes Green if he was not in his usual Gold. Apparently, they come in so many colors. Of course, after San Francisco, whenever I traveled to, especially in Europe, this man would be there. When did this began to travel and be thought as a form of entertainment by others? I never have understood and will not understand this phenomenon, this conundrum. But like all of us passers-by, we stopped at least once, felt intrigued at the ‚trick‘. We asked ourselves, ‚How did he do this?‘. But after seeing this man a hundredths time, one theory I could think of about us human and our level of intelligence- that we are easily duped. Including myself. Jeez, I hate that. I made a promise not to look at him again. As I wrote this down, a big grin appeared on my face- nope you will look the next time he appears! 😀13

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Everywhere Europe is possible by train

DeutschAkademie
Berlin, am

Traveling by train has always been loved by my mother. I never understood why as a child. I would always prefer flying than train riding. I just want to get to the destination fast and quick. Or so I thought. As I grew older, I began to compare a lot. To make the most of what I can with what is being offered. Usually, to travel to an airport, to be able to finally be on your comfortable seat on your flight, will take roughly around 3 hours. Especially nowadays after the nine eleven terror, most airports start to be very menacing about their policy. Harsh tones over reprimanding instructions like, ‚Shoes off please sir,‘, ‚Madam, your metal belt‘, ‚Excuse me, you need to step back to the scanning machine‘, ‚Is there anything liquid in this bag?‚ so on and so forth. At the end, once you are seated on your sit, with sweat running across your forehead, armpits, and your entire back, you started to think, is this what it is coming to nowadays, for one to be able to afford a flight ticket. Luckily in Europe, since they are banishing this border control, you are free to travel wherever you like with trains. Of course, sometimes it would cost a bit more, but most often it is the same as taking a flight, or if you are a computer or Internet junky, you can get a way cheaper price. Considering that most train stations are placed in the heart of its city, there would be less traffic to get to the station. Here in Berlin, the connecting train station is the Berlin main train station called, Berlin Hauptbahnhof. From Alexander Platz, only 10 minutes short train ride and your possibility of discovering Europe is opening up in front of you. And normally train never get delayed unlike our last long flights before. I am sure you had experienced that one! So what are you waiting for? I hope I managed to make you guys opt for more trains rides from now onwards. Mother, I am with you now 😀 I love train rides. I got to enjoy Europe’s best views even before I reached my destinations. Brilliant!

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Digeridoo

DeutschAkademie
Berlin, am

As I was walking down Alexander Platz, I saw this man playing a huge and long musical instrument. The first time I saw this instrument being played at was at its original location, Perth, Australia. It is believed to be introduced by its aborigines for their traditional performances. The wood is best made by eucalyptus tree, especially the ones that have been hollowed by termites. That is a pretty unique idea. Who would have thought, a wood that has been eaten by termites could make a unique sound. But back to this man in this photo, how did he travel from one place to another carrying that instrument around? Thinking about that alone, I thought, what a sacrifice he must have had to be sitting under this bridge and waiting for people to donate some money.

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Markthalle Neun: Street Food Thurday

DeutschAkademie
Berlin, am

When you missed your home country’s food, just go ahead to Markthalle Neun in Kreuzberg, about 30 minutes pleasant walking from Alexander Platz. By public transportation roughly it will take you 20 minutes. If you have the luxury of a car or a bike, it would only take 10-15 minutes (based on the google maps) to get there. This hall is packed with activities each day, but I am just focusing on Street Food Thursday, which happens only on Thursday starting at 5pm till 10pm. This market placed up to roughly 30 stalls of International foods, placing in food from countries like, Morocco, Nepal, New Zealand, Japan, Spain, India to name a few. Of course they have the local German food too. The place is always packed with the locals and the tourists. The mood in that market on Thursday surely is very vibrant and colorful. The long queues for most of the stalls are worth the wait as the food is special. Other than you fighting through your way getting your tummy filled up with international flavors at their food stalls, there are also, in between these food stalls, some delicatessen that sells cheese, meat, wine, olive oils and the likes. After coming back from Street Food Thursday, you would feel like cooking something special at home too. And with the selections of delicatessen that they are offering, I am sure you could come up with something that could make yourself feel like a new chef in town.

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They called it Karambola

DeutschAkademie
Berlin, am

One time when I was done with my German class and when there were nothing much for me to do, I decided to walk around Galleria Kaufhof, a mall that is in the vicinity of the Deutsch Akademie at Alexander Platz. The first half of the mall stores up clothing, perfume and beauty items but what attracts me more is the second half of the mall, where it caters the groceries that come from different part of the world. There are sections of foods from Brazil, Korea, Italy, India, China, Japan, Mexico and the USA to name a few, and a section of fruits from Africa, Cambodia, Thailand, Peru, Arab countries and lots more. My missing home syndrome was healed up a bit seeing one fruit type from my country. They called it Karambola here. What an interesting name. I left the mall feeling content knowing that I have a piece of what belongs to my country here in the heart of Berlin.  09

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