Metro Day

Debbie in the midst of a cold and not moving too fast so we plan a day on the metro. There are some things too far to walk to, like most of this city, so we work out a route and jump on the train.

A flea market is stop one. I don’t know if there is an equivalent at home but this is like a giant daily garage sale. In what was I think a parking area near the edge of the Tier Garten there are 4 or 5 very long rows of tent like structures. People rent these tents, I presume on a daily basis, and sell stuff. That is the best word I can come up with, stuff. You name it, it is there. Antiques of all description, clothing, some but not many handy crafts, CD’s and records, jewellery, stamps and coins, any kind of small stuff you can imagine, we even note a couple of folks selling old dental picks and mirrors. Weird thing is each of the stalls seems to have a theme. Like the CD guy is not selling any dishes, and the dishes person is not selling any clothing. And all the merchandise is ‘previously owned’. We wondered how the seller managed to amass great numbers of similar objects so they can then be sold. As I presume this type of venue precludes the need for garage sales they could get the stuff from estate sales or maybe folks downsizing or?????? As we progress through our day we discover this is not a one off thing, there is another flea market set up the same way in a section of town far to the south of the one we first go to.

The Berlin metro is amazing. We get off one train and our transfer train is there waiting. Must of known we were coming. The longest we have had to wait is for a bus. We did not know the bus times so we just went there and waited maybe 10 minutes. We zip around the city like we know what we are doing. We need two maps – one of the city streets and the other of the metro/underground train system. We freelance the buses and so far have done OK. We each take a map and sit every once in a while to coordinate.

Nachste halt, Pucklerstrasse. The street names sure are big in German, the locals don’t seem to have any trouble with this but it is hard for us, we go with the first 4 to 6 letters and get off at that stop, so far it has worked.

A couple of hundred meters from this bus stop are a two art galleries – the Brucke Museum and the Kunsthaus Dahlem. The Brucke was a group of artists active in the 1910’s in and around Berlin. I don’t ever recall hearing of them in any of my art courses but I found the stuff they did really cool. They worked in a time slightly after the Impressionist and more in the same time as the Expressionist painters in France and southern Germany. I don’t know how much, if any, contact they had with those groups but the work shows striking similarities. Not the same, just similar. It must have been something in the air at the time. Anyway neat stuff.

The second gallery building started life as an atelier commissioned by the Third Reich. It did go through several other changes but finally in the summer of 2015 it was opened to display post war German sculptures. I am not a big fan of sculptures, not that I dislike them but they don’t stir much in me, but I did like this display. Well worth the price of admission.

It’s Saturday night in the big city and two different symphonies are playing. Thought we should take in some music. We chose by building rather than program. The Konzerthaus Berlin was finished in 1821. It is a finely detailed hall, very different from the Bauhaus architecture we have been following that shuns any ornamentation at all. Even thought it was not a full time concert hall until 1994, it was fun to sit in a hall where concerts have been played on and off for a couple of hundred years. The sight lines did leave quite a bit to be desired. We sat high on the side of the hall and could only see about 1/3 of the orchestra.

The city is vast and it may be another tram day tomorrow. We’ll see.

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