Friday, December 16, 2005

The Top of the Reichstag Smells Like...Döner.

After mixing up military time (16:00) and regular time (6:00), causing me to be 2 hours late, Nils showed me around the area where he interns, walked through a historical Friedhof (English: cemetery), and then went to the top of the Reichstag. I found it interesting that the building he works in is outfitted with solar panels on top, so that the electricity produced can be sold. I asked him how was it possible to get a lot of electricity if it's always cloudy in Berlin, but apparently it just works. Although Nils is not from Berlin, he's like my personal tour guide and knows a lot of handy little facts about the city, as well as history. It sort of makes me think, Wow, I wouldn't be able to pull out handy dandy little factoids if I showed someone around New York or Washington, D.C. But anyway...

Surprisingly, we didn't have to wait too long to get into the Reichstag. It was a five minute wait, so I suppose being 2 hours late might've paid off, in the fact that we didn't have to wait in a long ass line. Nils said people can wait about 2 hours just to get in, but we were lucky. All we had to do was walk up to the entrance and go through a security check (which both of us set the metal detector off).

The inside of the Reichstag dome is really cool and very practical (typical German engineering). There are mirrors that catch the sunlight so natural lighting can be used down below while discussions go on and of course, everything is controlled by computers. However, there is a large rotating shade that moves as the sunlight moves, so that the sunlight isn't too strong on the mirrors. Practical, environmentally friendly, and efficient. What you would think of Germans, right? In my opinion, the inside of the dome reminds me of the Death Star in Return of the Jedi, when Lando Calrissian flies the Millenium Falcon to the center to destroy the reactor. (And yes, this is dorky, but seriously, just look at the picture!) People who like Star Wars will probably agree with me. (Speaking of Star Wars and going on another digression, Nils said that Germans don't say "Herr Vader," meaning "Mr. Vader," rather, they just say "Lord Vader" just like in English.) I tried finding a picture of the Death Star to put it up here, but I can't find one at the moment. You'll just have to go watch the movie or trust me.

To explain my title for this post, the funny thing is that as soon as we got to the top of the Reichstag, I sniffed and all I could say was, "Es riecht wie....döner!" (It smells like döner!) Go figure. Berlin smells like döner, I swear. Not that it's a negative thing or anything, I just found it amusing that even the top of their government building smells like it. Ironically, it's a Turkish import.
Yet another tangent: Right now I've got an Ohrwurm, Nerf Herder's "Nikki Webster." I don't know why. And Ohrwurm is such a great word. It literally means "ear worm," but it means a song that you've got stuck in your head. I'll probably use that when I get home because saying "I've got a song stuck in my head!" takes more effort than "I've got an Ohrwurm!"


Linda said...

I didn't know Nerf Herder had a song about Nikki Webster. I didn't think Americans would even know who she is. She really annoys me, haha.

I love that the lyrics say something about "Hungry Jacks". That's awesome. So is "Ohrwurm".

jennyschneider said...

I love that ohrwurm thing, and it's always so nice to see your pictures. I also love your writing as well. Did you get my e-mail? I sent you a novel yesterday. Me mish you!!


Stiny said...

DONER!!!!! They may be a turkish import, but they kick ass in Spain.

tzeh said...

mmm...doner. what else is berlin known for, food wise? besides various meat products? anything?

and yes of course i remember that scene in return of the jedi. that's actually what i thought it was until i read the whole post.

Joel W. said...

Ok, I'll bite...what is doner? One of the reindeer?