a unique perspective on this crazy world

let them eat cake!

Maybe not great advice if you are a French peasant but if you are a tourist in Germany, you really should eat cake!  Likely not twice in one day…  but hey, it was freezing out there so I had to stop at some cafes to keep my hands from falling off… and if you have been to a German cafe you will know that the cake calls to you… it is multilingual.  And almost uniformly delicious 🙂

At least I did my kaffee und kuchen like a proper German.  I walked all over Mitte and Prenzlauer Berg so that I would know my way around the neighborhood in the dark and finally get out of the hotel! 

Both cakes were amazing.  First I had an old favourite, Apfelkuchen, along with a hot chocolate.  Here on the continent, hot chocolate is a whole different beast than in North America – not a sweet, sticky mess but a bitter essence of cocoa frothed up like a cappuccino.  The second cake was one of the best cheesecakes I have ever had, complete with a fresh blueberry topping that reminded me of my German mother-in-law’s homemade jam.

I think this is the coldest it has ever been in Berlin – and I am usually here in November.  But it was one of those brilliant bracing winter days that give you rosy cheeks… and great photos 🙂  At certain points I was worried my hands might fall off but it was too hard to resist trying to get the perfect shot of the Fernsehturm. 

The Fernsehturm (television tower) was the East’s version of KaDeWe.  It was opened on October 7, 1969, the 20th anniversary of the founding of the DDR.  It marked the very center of the city and was a showpiece for communist East Berlin.  It was associated so strongly with the East there were calls to tear it down after Reunification but now it has become a symbol of Berlin – and a handy landmark for navigation.  Particularly for me since my hotel is nearby.  I actually climbed to the roof of the hotel to get the final shot of it for this post.  I also took some photos of the entrance to the hotel – The Weinmeister…

Mitte reminds me of Toronto circa 1983, especially Queen Street back in the days when punks roamed the streets.  It’s also part of the romance of Berlin for me.  It’s not often you can go back and relive your youth in real time!  🙂

Speaking of Fernseher, I did some troubleshooting on the hotel’s technology this morning and found a cable that wasn’t plugged in to an outlet so I helpfully draped it over the iMac and told reception… and I now have TV!  

But no CNN in English.  I was hoping to catch up on what was going on in the actual world.  I can find CNN in the TV Guide but not on my fancy iMac connection.  So I am typing this listening to some ABBA tribute band called Fernando Forever… the scenery is great.  OMG it’s Nana Mouskouri!  Travel does broaden your horizons J  And I really have to give ABBA credit for drilling those crazy songs into your unsuspecting sub consciousness.  They were singing in German but I knew it was ABBA even before the band name came on.  Apparently my German is going to get some practice while I am in Berlin…

I am planning to leave the hotel tonight to finally be able to report on the nightlife of Berlin.  Since it’s Easter weekend, it might not be too happening but at least I will have seen what is going on…  Based on today’s recognisance, it would appear there is something happening only a few blocks from my hotel… If not, the cafe with the great cheesecake is right in the neighborhood – but cake for breakfast, lunch and dinner likely just a little too much.  Even Marie Antoinette wouldn’t have gone there…


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