Hi. I’m back. I did say I was very eager to post about Perth, didn’t I? Hahaha. Oh dear, why has my motivation to blog about Berlin turned into my motivation to blog about Perth? Does this mean I need to travel more to ensure I post all the time??
Mom, you know what to do.
We visited the infamous Berlin Wall at two locations in Berlin – along Bernauer Straße and then at East Side Gallery. The Berlin Wall, erected in 1961, divided the capital into East and West for close to three decades. We heard stories of how families were torn apart overnight, and how people died trying to get over the wall. Fallen, mauled or shot, no one was allowed to cross the wall.
Bernauer, I feel, is slightly more sombre than East Side, although the East Side is much more visually appealing, what with the political intonations along the Wall. And we found a random plot of wild grass, so… photo opportunity 😀
The Berlin Wall (German: Berliner Mauer) was a barrier that divided Berlin from 1961 to 1989, constructed by the German Democratic Republic (GDR, East Germany) starting on 13 August 1961, that completely cut off (by land) West Berlin from surrounding East Germany and from East Berlin until it was opened in November 1989. Its demolition officially began on 13 June 1990 and was completed in 1992. The barrier included guard towers placed along large concrete walls, which circumscribed a wide area (later known as the “death strip”) that contained anti-vehicle trenches, “fakir beds” and other defenses. The Eastern Bloc claimed that the wall was erected to protect its population from fascist elements conspiring to prevent the “will of the people” in building a socialist state in East Germany. In practice, the Wall served to prevent the massive emigration and defection that marked East Germany and the communist Eastern Bloc during the post-World War II period.
– from Wikipedia
What remained on Bernauer was the structural steel of the Wall, so rusted and jarring and harsh against the humble neighbourhood it was almost obscene to look at. It was a painful reminder of what once was. The Germans are respectable in this manner; they are never afraid to own up to their past mistakes, wearing their guilt on their sleeves and prohibiting themselves from feeling proud. I felt humbled just by visiting for a few weeks.
East Side Gallery at Warschauer Straße, although more colourful, was full of innuendos. It was quite enlightening strolling along the gallery, the inner literature freak in me was pleased. The art was so incredibly clever.
We ended the day with a peaceful stroll along the River Spree. Is it just me, or is there something about travel that makes you appreciate sunsets so much more? There’s just incredibly peaceful and… happy-inducing. Is there such a term? Oh well. From today there is. Sunsets are happy-inducing.
After coming home, I realize I’ve started to fall in love with the sunsets here at home too. I never used to bother with our sunsets, but after coming home, I’ve found myself in many a moment admiring the colours in our evening sky.
I guess that’s part of the magic of travel, isn’t it? Taking your breath away with the great beauty this world has to offer, and yet at the same time opening your eyes to what you’ve been missing all along, right in front of you.
Recently, I’ve been very wrapped up within my own thoughts – thoughts of winning, thoughts of losing, thoughts of regret… and I think I might have missed the bigger picture. I have one more week to right my wrongs, and I really want to do this correctly, even if it’s only one more week, and even if it isn’t a lot of time. I’ve been trapping myself in my own head, worrying myself to death, but for this last week… I swear I will worry no more. Call me blind, but I will keep my faith and my belief, and we will end this week with our heads held high. Together.