Monday, August 07, 2006


Trip dist: 94 kms. Trip time: 6 hrs, 28 min. Tot dist: 4,876 kms.

Berlin Philharmonic, here I come!!

Well, I had procastinated on fixing the flat and left it to last minute (this morning right before departure, that is), mostly because I was not looking forward to the re-packing that fetching the bike repair book from the bottom of the panniers would've required.

But I'm an engineer, right? Who needs step-by-step instructions? How hard can repairing or changing a flat be? So in spite of not managing to wake up any earlier than usual I went ahead and fixed my flat no problem. Took only 20 minutes. And I didn't even have to use the spiffy "tire levers" included in my bike tools bag. Not bad for a newbie, huh? :D

Anyway, wow. Berlin looks A LOT like Mexico City, especially from Bundestrasse 2 through the Strasse der 17.Juni (I came from the West, through Spandau), all the way to the Brandenburg Gate, where I constantly had to remind myself, what country I was in. My promenade through these avenues, I swear, was like deja vu of driving along the Paseo de La Reforma, complete with Angel de la Independencia (here it called the Victory Column), and Hemiciclo a Juárez (tanks flank it here--they do not pop out in this picture--, for here it is a Soviet War Memorial). Uncanny, huh??

Anyway, Berlin sems pretty cool. After dropping the bike at the Hostel I strolled a bit towards Alexanderplatz along the famous big avenue of Unter den Linden, and found that you can hear any language that you can imagine spoken in the streets of Berlin: Spanish, English (even the street advertisements for beer, perfume, etc are doubled-up in English), Dutch, Italian, Polish, but I hardly hear any German. Again, had to constantly remind myself what country I was in, for it was simple matter to convince yourself you were elsewhere.

Hmm...Berlin is exciting....

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