I also wanted to put up another post, which talks more about the little things I've noticed so far on my travels in Europe. The last few posts have been a bit serious for this, so let's lighten the mood a bit!
We've discussed the European love of heat and how they are allergic to fresh air. For my take on it, see 2 posts below :)
Germans love their dogs! And big ones too. So many people are out walking them during the day in the snow. It's quite nice to see. Occasionally I'd see some people in London walking theirs but they were always the little pip-squeak ones and they would dress them is pink jumpsuits and the like. Yuk.
Berlin is full of graffiti. Some of it it quite artistic, like in the photo below. It seems to be a real cultural thing in Berlin – I can see why the Berlin Wall was so highly decorated.
Australians are everywhere! Honestly, it's so common to hear an Australian accent, particularly at the hostels. Natives of the countries I've been to don't seem to mind us though – they say they like how unfazed we are by things and just keep a positive attitude in whatever situation. I like that as a stereotype – beats the usual 'Aussies drink too much'.
I've met lots of great people along the way so far, like the American girl I sat next to on the plane for 8 hours as we tried to get from London to Amsterdam, the Canadian guy who told me how when he went to Amsterdam and bought some weed it stunk out his bags and he had every sniffer dog onto him for the next month of travelling and Richard the one legged English guy who had an argument with his companion about whether Turkey should be allowed into the EU. SO yeah, lots of stories to tell when I get back. However, I really enjoyed talking with a older English guy (he'd be nearly 50 I think) about how he has found England has changed in the last 25 years and how worried he is for his country. He had some great stories but one I really like was how he met Russell Crowe, when we he was a member of security at a boxing match which Crowe attended. He told me what the rest of the world already knows – that Crowe really is an arrogant berk and Crowe almost threw Franks's (the English guy) chair at him at the boxing match because he asked to use it and when Frank asked for it back, Crowe took offence at being asked to do something rather than his minders. Anyway, what I found the most entertaining part about this story was that was the night that Crowe got in trouble for throwing the phone at the hotel staff member! So it was Frank who pissed him off originally so he went at it at the hotel staff instead!
We are getting totally ripped off with the price of food at cafes in Australia. A nice sandwich here costs no more than $4 AUS and yoghurt and fruit (which seems to be a staple snack here) is $2.50 AUS. But the best thing I have had so far was this absolutely AMAZING chicken doner kebab in Berlin. This thing was so tasty – the chicken was seasoned to perfection and they put roast vegies on it! Possibly one of the best meals I have ever had. In the words of Dr Hibbert: “Marge, if that was my last meal I'd say bring on the lethal injection!” Perhaps not quite so far, but it was simply delicious.
The coffee isn't as good here as Melbourne. I'm waiting to see what it's like in Italy, but so far I've been disappointed. Berlin doesn't seem to have the coffee culture that London has and unfortunately, most of the coffee shops are Starbucks, which is universally awful.
I'll continue to post little things that I notice as I go along. These things I also want to remember – they are the things that make each place unique.