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Berlin

Spent a whirlwind week in Berlin with Amy and Fenris. Amy was presenting a poster at the Cog Sci conference.

Things I've learned about berlin:

  • largest city I've seen that's so pro-bicycle; so many cyclists, so many bike rentals, so many bikes locked up everywhere

  • omg cobblestones everywhere! not the major streets, but definitely the minor ones, and sidewalks, and...

  • brick, brick, brick - all sorts of brick buildings, and so many variations on types and sizes and arrangements and textures and ....

  • so many huge, old buildings; so many grand buildings with statues atop them; statues with lightning rods embedded, I think...?

  • lots of awesome new buildings as well

  • smokers. wow. haven't been around this many smokers since LARPing.

  • bidets!? maybe that was just our hotel.

  • many folks did not want to leave East Germany-due in part to their friends and family being there

  • East Germany dispatriated a large number of its populace, in many cases as opposed to jailing them

There was probably a lot more that I learned in various ways. I think the above list was mostly put together the first two days we were there, and then it all got away from me....  

Comments

bondo_ba
Aug. 8th, 2013 02:12 pm (UTC)
Bidets should be standard everywhere you go in Europe and Spanish-speaking South America. So if you didn't have one, you should be surprised...

I used to go to the Middle East a lot and was worried there wouldn't be any. But fortunately, in this regard, sanity prevails there!
kaolinfire
Aug. 8th, 2013 02:58 pm (UTC)
Sanity? What is this sanity you speak of!? ;)

It was my first time using one—I read a few online "how to's" before hand just to be safe. And I only used it once, because, well, ... what one is used to, I suppose.

The only place I saw one was in my hotel (which was Spanish-themed and Spanish-owned).
bondo_ba
Aug. 8th, 2013 03:13 pm (UTC)
What one is used to is a powerful force, I guess. One of the few things I wonder about when I travel is how a comfort-oriented society like the US can go without bidets... Generally, there are none in public restrooms anywhere, though.

I was in Berkeley in July, and hoped the off-beatness there would lead to bidets, but no such luck.
kaolinfire
Aug. 8th, 2013 03:16 pm (UTC)
I expect in the US the only place you'd find them (I've not found them) is in the private homes of millionaires. I don't know why I have that expectation, though. I don't know what about a bidet screams "money" in my head.
bondo_ba
Aug. 8th, 2013 03:22 pm (UTC)
That's probably because you've never been in a fleabag motel next to a dusty two-lane in Patagonia with bathrooms shared between rooms, and bidets in every bathroom!

That tends to lower the image...
kaolinfire
Aug. 8th, 2013 03:32 pm (UTC)
:hehehe: I imagine it would. Things to look forward to as a world traveler, some day, perhaps. ;) :)

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