Berlin and Malta: The Final Stretch

19-05-17

Immediately following the conclusion of my academic program in Florence, I took a train to the airport and made my final journey. I chose Berlin for the history and I chose Malta for the beach.

Berlin

Berlin is rich in two things: kindness and history. I found the Germans to be incredibly kind, despite the fact I could hardly pronounce a single German word. Patience was not a rarity for sure.

I’m known for finding street art in nearly every place I wander to. Berlin is no different.

Each night we found ourselves enjoying the local bar on a man made beach. Located right below train tracks, I wouldn’t have expected it to have such a lively and enjoyable atmosphere. I stood corrected.

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Berlin Wall

Young in terms of most memorable historical events, this wall stands as a constant reminder of the traumatizing division that took place in Berlin. Knowing that entire families had been separated by this wall brought about a very real sadness of my own. I voiced this while standing within arms reach of this great division and was met with an alternative way to view it. Someone said that perhaps this could stand as a sign of victory over the worst of human evil. The wall was broken, but the will of the people was not.

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Holocaust Memorial

To say this was touching would be an understatement. This is definitely the single most somber location I have ever found. The idea is simple. It is just 5 acres of concrete blocks arranged in a way resembling both a maze and an infantry formation.

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In addition to the main sites, many buildings still bear the scars of war, telling tales of the bullets that were shot and those that stood at either end.

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“Stop wars”

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Malta

Malta is a small island country just south of Sicily. Home to about 450,000 people, it is one of the smallest, most densely populated countries in the world.

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The most stunning feature of Malta is actually where it ends, in a crystal clear abyss. This particular photo was taken at Blue Lagoon, an excursion I secured for only 20 euro including drinks, lunch, and transportation by boat.

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As I said, I came to Malta specifically for this. However, once there I realized this country has far more to see. I decided to venture into perhaps one of its more daunting attractions. I found myself in the crypts. 

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While in Malta I stayed at Boho Hostel. I can’t express just how glad I am I chose this particular place to stay. I met people from all corners of the world and even got to know many of them fairly well. Travelling alone is a nice escape, but you also learn how to find yourself among strangers, only to leave as friends.

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Goodnight,

Jamie

 

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