Berlin: One United Germany.

I was an Army brat. I spent roughly five, maybe six, years of my early life living across three cities (Wurzburg, Stuttgart, Heidelberg) in what used to be a country called "West Germany."

That country doesn't exist (technically) any more. I still remember the morning in November, when I was 12, when the news broke into my Saturday morning cartoon ritual in Arizona, to announce that the Berlin Wall was coming down.

"Cool," I thought. "Mum and Dad never took us to Berlin. Maybe I'll go back some day?"

Then I put it out of my mind, and never thought about revisiting Germany until about a year ago, when I started planning this whole tour. And yesterday afternoon, I arrived via six-hour train journey (without wifi - WTF?) in this city. It had been 27 years since I last set foot in this country. And the moment I arrived in this city, I immediately fell in love with it's beauty...

A walk along the Spree was enchanting. It was warm and sunny out. The reflection was bright.

And the architecture!

New buildings mixed with old... Everywhere I turned, I was pleased with the modern designs that fit into the landscape with old. (Wait till I do a post later about my hotel!)

And look at this majestic view of Brandenburg Gate at about 7pm...

Beautiful, yes? But then, I am sucker for goddesses. The chariot is drawn by Victoria or Eirene (depending on your view), the goddesses of victory and peace (respectively).

Here they are from the side...

And one of the most beautiful sites in the area near my hotel... The Reichstag Building.

An intricate history, it has. But today, it stands as a centerpiece of the area. And you can tour it.

I was thinking about booking a tour to the domed portion you see atop it. But decided against it. There is so much to view in this city... And I have a feeling this will be one that I come back to in the future.