Ok, finally more pictures...
This is the famous "Ampelmann" (pedestrian traffic light) in Berlin. I didn't get the green guy. His hands are down and legs apart to show "walking". Some people are obsessed with these guys and all kinds of touristy merchandise is covered with them...
Here's another super cool traffic light...I'm not sure what it's exactly supposed to be for, but it's got a pretty heart and rain drop. I took these two pictures by the Flomarkt that I went to one day.
Here's Sachenhausen, the concentration camp we went to. This is the entrance into the actual camp. I went here with Tanya, Carles, and the Danish girl.
On the door is this: Work Makes Free. The idea was that a prisoner could buy their freedom through work, however this never actually happened. I believe this camp was used mainly as a quarry? You can see how cloudy it was. It was on the verge of rain all day. Really added to the atmosphere.
"Neutral Zone". If you entered the stoney area, you'd be given a quick warning to go back into the camp and then you'd be shot. If you can make it past that, there's a nice roll of barbed wire and then a high stone wall with barbed wire on top.
In the background are reconstructions of the barracks houses that the prisoners lived in. Inside were cramped sleeping quarters with beds stacked 3 high, an eating area with lockers where prisoners could put their "belongings" without locks. This risked theft because any possession was extremely valuable, usually just a bowel or a spoon for food. If you didn't have a bowel, you didn't get the food rations. There was also a wash room, but if a prisoner would wash their feet, they'd be beaten and even drowned in the basin.
These are the memorials for the people who died. I'm not sure exactly what it means, but it's a Jewish tradition where they put the stones on the graves.
This is where the worst political prisoners were housed.
Here was one of their forms of torture. They'd tie the prisoner's hands behind his back and hang him up on the pole, breaking his shoulders.
It says "The Dead Of Sachsenhausen."
The large tower I think is also part of the memorial. At the top are the triangles that would be put on the prisoner's clothes. Different colors and combinations would represent different things, like if they were political prisoners, Jewish, gay, and other things that were disliked at the time.
I don't remember what the building on the left was, but the one on the right I think might have been the kitchen. There was no way to get inside, so I'm not exactly sure.
This was the firing range. They would lead people down in front of the little shed down there and shoot them.
This area was the crematorium. There were candles set up in the shapes of the Star of David to memorialized those who were killed here. I didn't take any other pictures of the crematorium. I didn't think it really appropriate.
Some of the original barracks. These ones were further away from the others and I never found out what the exact significance of them were for...
Here were plaques from other countries to recognize the horrors that went on here, I think. They were all from other countries, except I didn't find one from the US..and I don't think from the UK either...because I don't remember being any English, so I don't know exactly what they memorialized. I think they were from countries of people who would have been imprisoned here. That's Tanya up at the wall reading one of the plaques. It was either from Russia or Ukraine...
Ok, to cheer things up a bit, Tanya, Carles, and I decided to go out for dinner together. We ate at a yummy Vietnamese place and then stopped at a cafe afterwards.
At the cafe I got myself a latte and the swirls looked almost like a heart! tehe.
Um, this was the "New York Cheesecake" that Tanya and I split. Yea, doesn't look like a New York Cheesecake. That's a chocolate crust, a mild cheese cake layer, and a lemon creme layer on top. It wasn't New York Cheesecake, but it was still super yummy!
Later on, Goethe had a trip to the Reichstag. This is the equivalent of the House of Parliament in Germany.
Here's the front. It caught on fire either right before or during Hitler's reign and the original dome collapsed. Once Germany got all their independence back, they rebuilt the dome but made it from glass. You can sort of see it here.
Some flags. I think the blue one is for Berlin? The writing under the triangular frieze in front of the building reads "Dem Deutschen Volk" which means, "Of the German People.
Ok, we had our own tour through the Reichstag, but at some point, these two men with white hair, glasses, business suites, and khaki trench coats joined the tour. It was a little creepy and we had no idea who they were...
The seating for the representatives of the political parties! There's the German Eagle super large behind the leading politicians' seats!
Die Hoppel (the glass dome)!! It's made of glass to represent the openness of the new German government.
We got to walk up to the top of the building where the dome is and this was the view. It was a gorgeous day.
There it is again!
See the Fernsehtor in the distance behind the large rectangular building? I swear, you can see that atrocity from anywhere in Berlin....
Haha, here's Bahaous, Yoshiko, and Michele (left to right)! It was a tradition in our class that at the Pause during class that the two guys would pick Yoshiko up in her chair and carry her to the front of the classroom. They did it on the roof of the Reichstag and at one point pretended like they were making for the edge of the roof. She got a little mad after that. haha.
From inside the Hoppel. There were all these mirrors and it was really pretty.
Where the cone thingy with the mirrors meets the roof of the Representatives' room with the German eagle.
That's all the pictures for now. I'm going to make a separate update for my first week as assistant supervisor in charge of my own square!