Monday, October 8, 2007
So, the mascot of Berlin is the bear. I don't know why, but Wikipedia does say that there was an Albert the Bear who "formally inherited Berlin from its last Wendish king, Pribislav" and the bear is on the city flag and crest and there are a bunch of those stupid artist-decorated statues in bear form (like there were cows in NYC, elephants & donkeys in DC, etc). Anyway, mein Freund had a family reunion here in Berlin over the weekend so we did a bit of touring around and happened to wander by this little park with a real Bear pit. This is home to Berlin's mascots, Thilo, Maxi, and Schnute (can't say for sure which one is pictured here) .... who seemed like nice enough guys, but the pit seemed freakishly small and lacking in stimulation for three actual adult-size brown bears. I thought the Germans were known for being nice to animals? Anyway, aside from the depressing bear citings, a good time was had by all, a lot of German was spoken, and much food was consumed as we went both to this very good Brazilian rodizio place (9 different roast meats!) and to our favorite brunch spot. (Then I got to go to the Hollywoods and listen to them berate their daughter for not drawing grass vertically. I wanted to send them to bed without their cobb salad, but....).