The title of this post is from the hit 2004 comedy Eurotrip, on which this blog is loosely based.
I, of course, play the Michelle Trachtenberg role.
Our second day in Berlin started off with the New Europe walking tour that we had missed the day before. Our tour guide was a tall, blond Englishman named Rob. Jackie, Melanie and I took to calling him “Alternative Rob”, since he bragged about hosting the New Europe hip, indie Alternative Berlin Walking Tour. Clearly, there is no one more alternative than Rob.
Alternative Rob gave us a great tour, starting with the Brandenburg Gate again and a brief history of
time Germany. We also walked through the Memorial to The Murdered Jews of Europe, a sea of dark gray pillars with an equivalently dark name.
How exactly this represents the victims of the holocaust is completely up to interpretation, which I feel is pretty apt. Beneath it is a holocaust museum which I made a point of visiting a few days later. Very powerful stuff.
Rob also took us to the site of Hitler’s Bunker…which is now a parking lot.
It’s not even a good parking lot. Just a patch of dirt where you dump your car. Take that Hitler, you Nazi bastard.
Alternative Rob’s tour continued through Checkpoint Charlie, and the Berlin Wall.
The Wall has seen better days, and never really recovered from that incident in ’89.
You can also find large sections of the wall scattered around Berlin, so you’ll encounter it whether you want to or not.
Throughout the tour, Rob gave us a set of “Top Tips” that he liked to refer to as “Rob’s Top Tips”. One of which was to visit the domed cathedral at the end of the tour. This we did. Not only was the inside beautiful, but the top of the dome also gave us great, albeit cloudy, views of Berlin. And we didn’t need to reserve three days in advance. (I’m looking at you, Reichstag!)
After descending the dome, Jackie insisted we go to the Pergamon Museum down the street. I relented because it ended up just being across the way from the house of my good friend, German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Unfortunately, Angie wasn’t in that day, so we couldn’t pop in for tea. Probably for the better, as we had a museum to see.
The Pergamon Museum is a repository of Ancient Artifacts. I, according to Melanie and Jackie, looked like I belonged there with my Indiana Jones-esque hat. I tend to agree.
The main draw of the Pergamon Museum is the Pergamon Altar itself, which contains a frieze of the battle between the Greek Gods and the Titans as adapted from the hit Playstation game God of War III.
The Pergamon is also home to the Gate of Ishtar, the 8th gate of ancient Babylon built by Nebuchadnezzar II. And if anyone makes a comment about the 1987 Warren Beatty movie Ishtar, may God have mercy on your soul.
What? Nobody remembers Ishtar? Well, that’s good.
Anyway, the Lapis Lazuli tiles that made up the gate were still as perfect and brilliant as ever, which really is saying something, given their age.
Our exit from the museum was marred by a sudden downpour, be we sought refuge in a Thai eatery before heading back to the hostel.
The ladies needed an extra night’s stay but the hostel was completely booked, due to the fact that it had somehow been invaded by German High School kids, so they booked a hotel room a short block away.
On another note, has becoming older made me hate teenagers? The answer is a resounding “Yes, dammit!”
God help them if they ever get on my lawn.
Next: Greek Crisis Management and No Mice!
Ich Bin Ein,