In the morning, we were greeted by Margrite, our city guide, who proceeded with Peter, our driver, to weave through the streets of Berlin and the city’s history. Immediately, the emmense size of the city unfolded as we moved from one “neighborhood” to another viewing the contrasts between the sections of Berlin. Seeing the areas of the city that were once divided by a wall and now exposed, revealed the invisible barrier that still exists. Seeing the physical growth that has occurred after the various conflicts in Berlin, is one of amazement and encouragement.
Most Berliners are proud of their city and the contributions the city has made to history and culture. Some Berliners have trouble forgetting and are psychologically separated from the new topograpy and culture of the city. As a whole, the city is rich in exposing all aspects of its historical events and the ability to overcome conflicts that has lead to their current world status as a strong nation.
From an architectural history perspective, the city’s neo-classical style is everywhere and strategically placed throughout the city. Modern architecture dots the landscape with impressive design and engineering. From a sustainable perspective, the government building exposes Germany’s efforts in alternative energy and technology. Though the city is gritty and dirty (hello….it is an old city), the recycling efforts are subtle, yet effective in its placement, throughout the city in an effort to control waste in this city of 3.5 million people.
Berlin is truly an amazing city and one worth a “bucket list” item.