Saturday, August 6, 2011

baltic travels pt 2

so after copenhagen....sorry one more picture of copenhagen
dammit i loved denmark.

anyway, after leaving thecountryiwanttoraisemytrendyfuturebabiesin we boarded the cruise. no one except my grandma had ever been on one before and that in itself added some interesting elements to the trip.

why cruises are weird -> exhibit a -> mandatory group photos.
every time we left the ship we were required to take one of these. that beast of a fraulein had a grip that would not let us or her beer go anywhere until a shot was snapped.
it was about a 2 hour train ride to get into berlin but it was really pleasant. we sat with some australians and looked out the window. my grandma left berlin when she was 9. the year was 1938 and her family was jewish. this could be a whole other post - point is, she has been back several times but i could definitely tell she was thinking/reflecting/feeling a lot more emotion than she was letting on.

there was a bus tour - brandenburg gate, checkpoint charlie, berlin wall, blahblah. it all meshed together on that dumb bus. taking pictures from the window, having exactly 2.5 minutes to get off the bus to look around? ugh it was disappointing and i wish i could have just spent a solid week exploring berlin.

this picture below is actually super super funny. one of the things that makes my dad awesome is he definitely tries to make the most of his traveling experiences. unfortunately, his constant state of optimism never seems to hear me when i am shouting NODADTOURISTTRAP!!! he just got way too excited and those skeezballs in suits pulled him up and were all like 'come take a picture with us!' apparently, the instant my grandma snapped this photo, that guy on the right had muttered - 'hey 2 euros, right man?' hence my dad's 'uhhhwhaaaaaaa?' face. classic. dad said the story was worth the 5 bucks though :)
berlin awesomeness picked up once the bus ride ended. we had 3.5 hours of free time.

drinking a ratler! part of brian's photo scavenger hunt
...uhmmm prob need to post that separately:0

after quick soups we made our way over to the house my grandma grew up in. i wish she had brought the picture she showed me of her in front of this flat when she was little because i think she was standing just the same way..

we then walked over to where her cousin helga's family lived. many relatives from around germany moved onto that street for safety so they would be close to one another. soon after kristallnacht, my aunt helga's family moved to israel while my grandma's moved to san francisco.
please don't let my airborne body distract from the seriousness of the situation. however, she was very young at the time and as we were walking, most of her reflections were of how much fun it was to just cross the street to her cousins' house and play all the time together. i loved all of the apartments/doors in this neighborhood. i wish i had taken more/better photos/a video, but it was much more interesting to just walk around with my grandma and hear all she had to say.
we didn't want to miss our bus back to the train back to the ship, so we headed back to some huge mall they originally dropped us off at.

lol my grandma is laughing at my aunt who is taking the picture here. her camera is a DINOSAUR haha - it is a 10 year old 5pix digi camera that weighs like 6 pounds and takes forever to shoot - my aunt loves it though and defended it heroically throughout the trip.

and there is always time for ice cream :) seriously i ate so much these past 2 weeks. i feel like for my next trip i should just travel the world and do an ice cream tour.

anyway, berlin was the most epic port, i can probably cram the last 3 countries into one post. and keep a lookout for that baltic video;)

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