First it's breakfast at Hansablick, something that we always enjoy. Their art collection seems to have grown. I'll try and get some pictures later. We walk down the Spree to the first bridge and get on board the Prinzessen, tow of only four passengers on board. We've done this trip before, but it's a relaxing way in which to renew your relationship with the city. What strikes us is the amount of construction that still continues in Berlin. What also amazes me is the amount of work that still needs to be done on the east side of the city. The trip takes you down the Spree River, through the locks and on to the Spree-Oder Waterway, and then cuts south and west onto the Landwehrkanal, which takes you through the city, almost under the U1 line, and then up through the Tiergarten right next to the Zoölogischergarten, and then back to the bridge. It lasts a little over three hours, we have hot chocolate, several cups of black tea and at least two refills of water.
We've decided to go see Templehof Airport, but grab lunch first at an "Italian" restaurant, only open a month (not bad, really) but (from the menu: "Nachos Mexicano - hot tortilla chips", "Nachos California - hot tortilla chips with melted cheddar cheese", and finally, "Nachos Tifana (?) - hot tortilla chips with melted cheddar cheese and chicken." We make our way the plaza that effectively hides the massive airport that Hitler had build here. A memorial to the Luftbrücke that supplied Berlin during the blockade dominates the plaza more than I had imagined.
In the background you can see the entry court which belies the immensity of the terminal building that lies behind it. I'm afraid that I like this architecture in spite of its provenance - same goes for Mussolini as well. It's the use of mass and fenestration that I find attractive. Some pictures:
The airport is no longer used, and was absent of any human beings (it seemed) excepting a lovely police woman who explained that if we come on Monday at 16:00, we could go in and see the interior spaces. We thanked here and put it on our calendar. It you look at the picture above and judge its gentle curve and then realize that it is only one part of a terminal building that extends for almost a full semi-circle, you can see the scale which we were observing.
We train back up to Mitte, so that we can go to Dom Vesper at the Berlinerdom (the evangelisch cathedral in Berlin.) It is a modest affair, mostly organ music played by a French organist, with selections from Franck and Widor. Between these selections there is a psalm, a reading of the Gospel for Cantate, and a brief sermon on "ein neues Lied". It seems to attract a combination of parishioners, tourists, and music lovers. The organ is great for French music, but it doesn't fill the room to the extent that I expected.
We walk over to Hackheschermarkt with its lovely Secession buildings and shops. I get an Ampelmann hat - Arthur looks for an Ampelmann tie, but none is to be had. Shops for tiles, hats, odd furniture, and odds 'n ends take up our time before dinner, and then back to the hotel. Collapse again.