Berlin: Day Two

Source:  Berlin: Day Two    Tag:  albino beauty
We woke up Sunday morning with the realization that we only had a couple hours left in Berlin and a long list of things to do. A few of us had decided to venture out to Berlin-Grunewald to visit the Grunewald forest. The Grunewald is a 3,000 hectares German forest.
Despite all the art and culture, Grunewald was my favorite thing about Berlin. We walked through the woods for a couple hours – it was relaxing; it was beautiful. I wanted to spend all day there, but alas, art calls.
Alex and I went back to the Museum Island. We couldn’t come to Berlin and not see the bust of Queen Nefertiti. On our way to the Neuesa Museum, we stopped by Berlin’s Art Market – it certainly lived up to my expectations of a good Art Market.
The Neues Museum is the epitome of neoclassical architecture. The building itself was breathtaking. The exhibits included Egyptian, Prehistory, and Early History collections. I went to the Neues Museum for two reasons: 1) the iconic bust of the Egyptian Queen Nefertiti, and 2) Berliner Goldhut.
Quick Art History lessons:
1) Nefertiti, literally meaning “the beautiful one has come,” was the Great Royal Wife of the Egyptian Pharaoh Akhenaten. Not only was Nefertiti one of the most important women of the ancient world, but also the icon of feminine beauty. Her bust is an icon of Ancient Egypt and is one of the most copied works in history. Approximately 100 years ago, her bust was discovered by a German archeological team, and since then has been kept at several locations in Germany. Along with being a symbol for Egypt, Nefertiti’s bust is now also a symbol for Berlin. Conclusion: Queen Nefertiti’s bust is a big deal.
2) Berlin’s Gold Hat is a Late Bronze Age artifact made of thin gold leaf. The hat served as the insignia of deities/priests in regards to the sun cult that was widespread in Central Europe around the time.
The exhibit for Queen Nefertiti’s bust was something most of us were very moved by. More than being captivated by this beautiful art piece that Alex and I had both studied in our respective Art History classes, we were more moved by the piece next to it. There was a replica of Nefertiti’s bust. Along with it, there was a description in Braille. They created a version of Nefertiti that you didn’t have to see – a version that you could touch, and feel her beauty just the same. The fact that someone thought about replicating Nefertiti’s head for blind people is…incredible. Art is about more than just seeing, it’s about feeling.
Berliner Goldhut
Berliner Goldhut
We left the Museum Island and we were on our way to meet up with everyone when I got a phone call from Melody and Joseph. “Come here. You have to see this,” they said. They refused to tell me what it was, other than, it was something that I must see. So we went to Melody and Joseph and they took me to a tower…OF RITTER CHOCOLATE. UT Austin’s Tower got nothin’ on a Ritter chocolate tower. Side note: they recorded my reaction.
After seeing that delicious tower and realizing there was nothing else I could see in Berlin that day that would beat a Ritter chocolate tower, we went to Checkpoint Charlie and then headed to the bus station. Six hours later, we were back in Würzburg.
Checkpoint Charlie

Translation of German words:
a. New
b. Berlin Gold Hat

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