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08 April 2009

R&R alpha - berlin/dresden (day 8/9) - yalla bina

it's now the 8th of october. we've fairly unpickled ourselves from oktoberfest. TheTav had to shoot off home (he had facebook dates to keep), and for some security reason that i'm sure he made up, he couldn't go to prague (our next stop), with us because he hadn't told him mommy, i mean, his company first (if you're reading this TheTav, i'm just fukking with ya). man, there were a lot of parentheses used there. anyways, TheWayne and i did a secondary tour around berlin on our way to the main train station to get tickets for prague. we stopped at kaiser wilhelm church which was strangely found hidden amongst modern buildings in the downtown area. it was one of the most gaudy looking churches i've ever seen in my life and for some reason, i can't find photos of it. i KNOW i took some, maybe they were so horrid, they deleted themselves. lots of gold and brass and blood-red velvet; silver horns and angels floating around the must-and-dust filled air. we got our tickets, and moved on to the reichstag which is the building that houses the german parliament known as the bundestag, not to be confused with the german football (soccer) league, bundesliga. this was a convenient location as it was just about a half mile from the hauptbahnhof station (which i just found out is the largest crossing station in europe, fancy!). we wanted to see the dome which is open to the public, but it turns out that it was closed due to maintenance, so we just hung out on in front of the building watching all the italian high-school kids flirt with each other and bound around on their big german field-trip.

we moved on to check point charlie again just in case we missed anything. it was pretty much the same as it has been since they tore down the wall in '89. we found the last kremlin flag hanging on the exterior of a building which we found pretty impressive until we read that it was a REPLICA of the last kremlin flag. now how the hell does that work? anyways, after seeing that not much had changed since the day before, we moved on to oranienbergerstra├če (oranienberger street). berlin has oranienstra├če and oranienbergerstra├če. i think the night before we were looking for one and found the other. after much walking because TheWayne loves to walk (damn triathlete and fitness), we stopped at a mexican cantina and had a few beers with dinner. after that, we hopped over the bar next door which had shisha, a common egyptian pastime that TheWayne had never tried. after the shisha, TheWayne and i caught the train back to the hotel where we picked up our bags and headed out to catch the DB train at the hauptbahnhof station on our way to prague. while waiting for the train we bought a few beers and some sushi for the ride. we also tried to buy some cards to have something to do on the trip, but they were all in german and in plastic. we bought what we thought was a poker deck, but it turned out to be a pinochle deck. that was no use to us, so we without entertainment besides ourselves on our way to prague. here i've posted a picture of a peculiar bike. it seems germany has "call-a-bike"s. from what i can tell, you can call the number, give them a credit card number and the number on the bike, and they remotely unlock the bike for you to use. i'm guessing once you lock it up again (at another DB bike station which are located around the city), they charge you for the time and deduct a deposit on the bike. nifty!

oh yeah, we had like a 6-hour layover in dresden, germany, i believe from like 11:30PM to 5:30AM. that's why this post is called "yalla bina" which is arabic for "let's go!". i taught this to TheWayne early on in the trip, and he took to it well. if we were heading out to go somewhere, one of the other of us was more than likely to say it. this late evening/early morning would end up me hating having taught him this word. not in that he overly used it, but that's all i could think of as my aching feet followed TheWayne around dresden in the death of night. we locked our bags in one of the train lockers and set off around 11:30PM. i kinda figured we'd just sleep that 6 hours, but TheWayne had other plans. he wanted to walk around and see dresden by night. we walked (oh yes, this word WILL be used quite frequently in this section) around for a while until we stumbled upon a bar we found open called capetown's (sorry the link is all german). it was in a little square with a few other bars around, but there seemed to be more people here. we stepped in, and the waitstaff all wore white shirts and ties and had these cool portable scanners that at the time i thought were really neat, but i can't think what they were used for now (this is where TheWayne comes in in the comments). i had my first diesel (half lager, half cider, and a bit of black currant cordial). maybe TheWayne and The Tav built it up a bit too much as i wasn't as impressed with it as i'd hoped to be, but it WAS alcohol and it WAS in front of me. i think they were closing not too long after we'd arrived so we didn't stay there long. we walked some more, and then walked a little more and then came upon another bar still open called ayer's rock (this link brought to you in english). here we sat outside, drank, and waxed philosophical. we got into deep conversations about love, betrayal, suicide, and more. the bathroom was inside which by this time we were visiting frequently (yet separately) due to libation overload. just outside the bathroom, there was one of those tourist boxes with dozens of advertising slips for this boat ride or that bike tour or the other museum. at that time in the night, drunk, tired, sore feet, i thought it would be HILARIOUS to collect all of them and give them to TheWayne on the train, so i stacked them all up and put them in my back pocket. around 3AM, that bar closed and we were off to... you guessed it, walk some more. now NOTHING was open. nothing around but just streetlights and two americans wandering aimlessly around a formerly fire-bombed city. we were walking down to towards the river when we saw these strange blue cubes seeming to float on the hillside. we walked up to them to find they were only blue-lit lucite planted on the hill. we couldn't find an actual use or memorial plaque explaining their meaning. we then walked across the elbe river where TheWayne had a fleeting thought of jumping into it for shites and giggles. we walked along the river and were JUST about to board a luxury boat that was docked when a taxi came along the river road and dropped off it's fare just there. what are the odds?! by this time, i'm hobbling and exhausted, and the time is coming up so we decide to walk back to the train station. we got there about 45 minutes before our train arrived, so we each grabbed a bench in the station and took a nap. i dozed off and on watching the cinnabon lady open her stand as the station got progressively busier. 45 minutes later and we were on the train to prague, only about 2 hours away by train. we tried to catch a bit of sleep. i had a hard time getting comfortable as something was pinching me in the back. i pulled out the stack of adverts i'd taken from ayer's rock, showed them to TheWayne and explained my devious plan. it wasn't so funny at this time in the morning...

btw, new poll on the left.

me waiting at the hauptbahnhof station for our trip to prague via dresden.

TheWayne doing his best myspace pose, and me with my wasabi peas.

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4 Comments:

Blogger themom said...

Better late than never...love the post. Ahhh, the world traveller that you are!

So sorry I didn't post "SPOILER" on my blog. I thought about it later but then forgot to correct it also. Have to love senioritis!


XXXOOO

9:27 AM, April 08, 2009  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dude. First of all ... myspace? Who has a myspace page anymore? Fer fuck's sake! It's all about Facebook and LinkedIn, duh! Next, walking is the best way to see a city. We got apple flavored shisha. You were blowing air backwards through it, and the dude came over complaining and instructing us not to do so. That was a pretty cool bar, because inside there were big rooms with a lot of nice couches and pillows ... for ... or-gggeees, perhaps? LOL! We were continuing to dodge metro fare. On the train platform waiting for the train to arrive, we ended up briefly conversing with a quite fine lookin' lady, who I can't remember if she was German or American. But, she spoke highly of Prague, and I would have given her the bizness given the chance. The little scanner things at the 1st bar in Dresden were the typical PDA thingies that european waiters use for keeping your tab...I don't think they're anything more special than that. We got pretty lit up at Ayer's Rock. That was a good session. I was amazed it was open, because after the first bar I thought for sure we were sunk for finding a place. We crossed the bridge and headed west(?) to the other bridge, came back over, and then decided that the night was truly over and it was time to head back to the train station. We had drunken munchies, but we had to wait for the shops to open. I think I had some crappy pizza. OH - and a Diesel...no no no...half lager half coke! MMMmmm. Tasty. Back onto the train...fucked off to sleep...woken up by 3 dudes entering into our compartment. Make space. 1 dude keeps closing the window. I open it. He closes it. I open it. He closes it at which point I give a little "OY!" and a "what the fuck are you on cunt?" kinda look, and I open the window again where it stayed. I would have either suffocated or withered from the stuffiness of that compartment. Wasabi peas are good.

"Shit man. Tell ya whut I'd do man...I'd do 2 chicks at the same time. YALLA BINA!!!"

Wayne

1:21 AM, April 09, 2009  
Blogger swedish chef dave said...

Dude

where are you going to end up working, Dubai or Qatar, eithr is good for the indian food, do you like indian food after you stint in India ????, anyway, I may be jumping ship with granite and going with an Irish outfit that pay even better and give you no shit what so ever, I am inundated with the typical GE shite that is starting to permeate through the Granite bureaucracy and making it identical, all that safety and forms and any other crap that can think up to overload all the hard workers on the front line, we will see how it goes, but i have to be out of the GE sphere for 6 months to be able to work for this outfit as they then contract me back to GE, small world these GE turbines.

keep in touch and keep safe in Egypt

Dave in the sierras

2:24 PM, April 10, 2009  
Blogger adhyapaka said...

You really are not a fan of walking, are you? See, ten miles around Edinburgh daily wasn't that bad. I'm glad to read that you got some history on your trip, even if it was by force.

1:19 AM, April 19, 2009  

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