Day 3  

    September 4  Sunday - 


    We got up early - 7:15 - in order to get ready for church.  We had bought some great pastries last night so we ate in our apartment, even drinking our instant coffee again.   We walked over to the Berlinerdom.  The usher must have known we were Americans as she took us to a special seating area where we were given the order of service in English plus ear phones so we could hear the prayers and sermon in English.  That was very nice.  We later learned that the interpreter was a young woman from New York.

    The Berlinerdom (see model) is considered a state church and Protestant, but the service was very liturgical, following the tradition order of service similar to the Episcopal service. There was a Eucharist where people came forward to receive bread from a lay person and then moved to one of several Lay Eucharistic Ministers – just like in our church.  The pastor was Dr. Petra Zimmermann.  Also present was the bishop, Dr. Wolfgang Huber, who delivered the sermon.   The music was wonderful, a large organ and a sizable choir.  The setting for the service was The Missa brevis Sancti Joannis de Deo in B-flat major by Joseph Haydyn.  FOR HISTORY, DETAILED DESCRIPTION AND MORE PHOTOS SEE DAY 2.

    The couple sitting in front of us were from Minneapolis.  He was a Lutheran pastor.  We talked for a while after church. 

    We went to the Humbold Box for lunch.  This is a newly constructed odd shaped five story building that is on the site of the former Berlin Palace which is directly across the Unter de Linden from the Berlinerdom.  It will be torn down once the palace is rebuilt.


    The ground stone of the original palace was laid in 1443.  It is unsure what this palace looked like but it is assumed that it was more of a fort than a palace.  Parts of this original building remained intact until the final demolition of the palace in 1950.   In 1535, Joachim II selected Berlin as his main residence and had the palace rebuilt in a more modern style.  The golden age of the Berlin Palace began in 1688 with Friedrich III’s ascension to the throne.  Over the years, various changes and additions by succeeding emperors were made.  The building was damaged during World War I. The People’s Naval Division was stationed in the palace rooms.  During World War II, parts of the building was gutted by fire.

    Even though it was damaged, it was not destroyed and was shored up and used as an exhibition space for a 1946 exhibition.  It was finally decided in 1950 to demolish the entire building.  It took over four month before the job was finally accomplished.

    On July 4, 2002, the German Bundestag voted to reconstruct part of the Berlin Palace and house a “Humboldt Forum” on the site.  It is scheduled to be inaugurated on October 3, 2015 – the 25th anniversary of German Reunification.

    There was a nice indoor and outdoor café on top with a wonderful view of the Berlinerdom - almost eye level with the towers.  We ate outside.  My wife had a lamb meatball which she said was wonderful.  I had a yellow curried wurst with a vanilla and curry sauce and sweet potato fries.

     In the gift shop they had a model of what the new palace will look like…a duplicate of the old one.   Of course I bought one. The salesman said I would finish my model long before the real one is built. The building had a wonderful display of models of the early buildings. There were museum on the other levels.

    The Berlinerdom and Humboldt Box are right on the Spree River, so we took an hour long boat trip.  The river was really crowded with tour boats.   It was a most enjoyable trip.   They furnished ear sets so you could learn about what is along the river in the listeners own language.  We passed the Berlinerdom,  some of the buildings on Museum Island, the Tiergarten and other significant landmarks.

    We were a few minutes walk from the apartment so we came home to leave the model kit. We had a 4:00 engagement today to meet my friend, Dieter Marx. 

    There is an interesting story of how I got to know Dieter Marx.   In the spring, I was referred to the Chesapeake &Washington  Heart Care for a routine stress test.  It was located in a new office space.  The walls of the waiting room and the halls leading to all of examination rooms and offices were covered with poster size prints of famous European buildings.   We have visited most of them plus there were the buildings we were going to see on this trip.  The staff thought that I was going to move in since I stayed so long studying all of the prints.   Dr.Bertele gave me the email address of the company that produced these beautiful prints.  I contacted www.LIDIARTE.de  and had a wonderful response from the owner and creator of these prints, Dieter Marx.  He sent me his catalog which I would suggest everyone have.   It is beautiful and would equal any coffee table book.   Not only did he have the poster size prints which he had drawn and his associate, Susanne Mocka had colored, these prints could be order in post card size.   Since I have no more walls free for large prints, I ordered about 50 post card size prints.   Thus began a correspondence with Dieter, who also had spent time on my website.  He knew that we were going to be in Berlin, so he invited us to come by and visit him.   There is a little more to this story.  Not long after my evaluation visit to Dr. Bertele, he called me to inform me that he had found an extra framed print of the Frauenkirche in Dresden, and would I like to have it.  I was in his office, 15 miles away, before he hung up.  We hung this print in our dining room, where it remains today next to my model of the Fraunekirche (see model).
    (The print above is Deiter's rendition of the Frauenkirche.)

    Dieter had given us directions on how to reach his flat.  We took the metro from the Hackescher Market stop near our apartment, changed trains and got off in Charlottenburg area of Be
    rlin.  We walked several blocks in a very attractive part of what had been West Berlin. 

      I had originally thought that he had a shop or store, but his business is from his flat which is on the fourth floor of a lovely building.  There was no elevator so we climbed to the top. He had an interesting apartment which was on the roof.  We had a wonderful visit for about an hour.  It was really great to meet him in person and be the recipients of his kind hospitality.

     We started walking back to the metro but decided to stop in a delightful outdoor cafe called Mar y Sol. We had drinks and two tapas.  We got back on the metro, changed trains and went south to Potsdamer platz.    We saw the Sony building…very modern as were most of the new building in that area.  We stopped in the Marriott Hotel sidewalk café and had dessert.

    We headed home after trying to figure out the right metro, but we made it home safely.   We are really tired tonight.

    Next Day

    Day 1 - Berlin

    Day 2 - Berlin

    Day 3 - Berlin

    Day 4 - Berlin

    Day 5 - Berlin - Potsdam

    Day 6 - Dresden

    Day 7 - Dresden

    Day 8 - Prague

    Day 9 - Prague - Kutna Hora

    Day 10 - Prague

    Day 11 - Brno

    Day 12 - Budapest

    Day 13 - Budapest

    Day 14 - Budapest

    Day 15 - Vienna

    Day 16 - Vienna

    Day 17 - Vienna - Melk Abbey

    Day 18 - Vienna

    Day 19 - Salzburg

    Day 20 - Salzburg

    Day 21 - Salzburg