Night Location: Berlin, Germany
Song of the Day: Don't stop believing - Glee Cast
Mumisode of the Day: Telling David loudly in the Thai-Sushi restaurant how she managed to get her scarf tied around the button on her bra complete with hand actions. When reproached by Amber, she reminded us that "He is one of the family!"
This blog begins with a mention of our final day in Prague as we have been fairly slack in keeping readers updated with our movements. During our Segway tour we had seen the Prague Castle and had left this for our final day. We set off this time on the tourist tram, No 22 so as to avoid the massive uphill climb, as those of you who have seen pictures of the castle would understand. It towers over the rest of the city. The castle goes down in the world record books as the largest castle complex in Europe. (I have not checked this myself; I am choosing to believe the Segway guide). Even more impressive is the St Vitus Cathedral that towers over the castle complex. We arrived in time to see the changing of the guard complete with fanfare and then made our way up to the Stanhov Monastery famous for two things, its baroque library and its brewery. The former was explored at length, but sadly they no longer let you into the rooms. You just have to view them from the landing. The most exciting thing about this library was the hidden spiral staircase behind fake book spines that led to the upstairs gallery.
Lunch was enjoyed after a minor struggle with a group of twelve on a terrace overlooking the city below. We collectively agree that this is the best tomato soup we have eaten to date. From there we entered the St Vitus cathedral itself, a magnificent building that has taken the last 600 years to complete. It is really interesting because the building is very Gothic complete with awesome gargoyles, but then it has these art deco, almost modern stained glass windows in extraordinarily vivid colours.
Autumn has well and truly started here; the trees in the royal park are brilliant in gold and amber. None of us had any idea just how many parks there are around Prague.
Today was our transit day from Prague to Berlin. We had reserved seats on a Eurocity train so thought that it should be fairly simple as at least we were familiar with the main train station. The seating as booked on the internet had us each in a different cabin. Not sure how that makes any sense. Needless to say we did not stay with our original seat allocations. The other issue was that the restaurant car was "Caput!" We were told this by the lady who came to check our tickets so it was quite a long day without lunch. Gemma was particularly hungry on this trip!
Berlin has a very intricate train network. It took us a while to figure out where we were and how to get tickets to our apartment right outside Checkpoint Charlie. Gemma and Amber avoided the 'tricksters' when they tried to resell tickets while waiting in the ticket line.
Everyone was fairly tired after the transit day. We saw our first glimpse of 'the wall' as we are staying literally on top of Checkpoint Charlie. Across the road is a Thai/Japanese restaurant called 'Thai/Sushi' and this is where we decided to have dinner. We were a little concerned given the cross cultures but it turned out to be excellent and definitely a welcome change after 30 days of pasta and pizza. Everyone is really looking forward to exploring the city tomorrow, particularly the Jewish Museum.