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Saturday, October 21, 2017

warsaw

On Monday morning, I headed to the Berlin airport to fly to Warsaw.


It was either a 6 hour train ride that would put me in at 1p, or a 1.5 hour flight that would get me in at 10a. Plus..I'm a proponent of walking it out after a race. Breakfast was a plum filled donut since I was hungry and they were out of croissants. Darn. 

Propeller plane. I was terrified.

However we were rewarded with chocolate as we left the plane.

I ubered from the airport to Old Town where my hotel-esque/apartment place was at.. $2 uber ride and it was like a 20 minute ride. Let's just say I ubered everywhere on this first day due to you know, the legs. First stop - pierogis at Zapiecek which apparently is a Polish food chain there. To be honest...the compote tea I had was the best part of the meal (like a tea made from dried fruit). 


The Museum of the History of the Polish Jews was the only place I really trekked out to on my own two feet. Glad I did, I passed the Warsaw Ghetto on the way.

After...3 hours at the first museum (audioguides make you appreciate the experience), I learned that the Warsaw Uprising Museum (which was recommended by Uber driver #1) was going to be closed the next day...so I ubered over there. In which I discovered Warsaw is not just an "Old Town" but has a little cosmopolitan downtown too.

I then Ubered to the Warsaw University Library which was very green and pretty! Lighting wasn't in my favor..

Then I trekked back to Old Town and discovered some cute little side streets on the way.

Back to Old Town.


After rolling around in the hotel for a little bit, I headed out to dinner at Podwale 25 Kompania Piwna, as recommended by good ol' Foursquare and Yelp. Started off with a dark beer, and mushroom soup (which was soooo good). Not pictured is a giant bread basket that came with the meal, a pickle, and a huge piece of chocolate cake that I devoured. There was also some live Polish music. All of this for 20 bucks. Warsaw is cheap ya'll!

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Didn't expect the fish to be served like this. I was a little freaked out and didn't eat all of it. However, the fries were a different story. 


My little apartment/hotel was a 30 second walk from this!


Day 2... not feeling as sore so the world was my oyster.


Almost forgot to selfie! 

Breakfast just isn't as important to Europeans...but this was still good.

Old Town Morning.

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The square by my place.

I went on a random walk along the Royal Route - my intention was to go to the art museum since it was free on Tuesdays...but I got a little sidetracked... this is the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

Then I needed to use a bathroom desperately..so Starbucks it was... where I had a PSL with soy milk and it was incredible.

After some shopping I found myself on top of the tallest building in Warsaw.

The views were quite nice! 

Then I found a super cute healthy spot for lunch!

Then 6 hours later I arrived at the art museum. I was very excited to see something built in legos then I realized what he was doing.

This was the building that had the observatory at the top.

Not pictured: Long exhausting walk to the UPS store to pick up my train ticket to Prague. Yes, Polrail lives in the 1900s and insists on printing and shipping paper train tickets. They could not ship to my hotel because my hotel was more like an airBNB and there was no receptionist desk. Don't get me started on this situation.


Eventually I ubered from the UPS Store back to the hotel, and then grabbed dinner outside in the Square. It was such a cute little outdoor restaurant! They had blankets. This was probably my best meal in Europe on this trip - I had a beer, water, pumpkin soup, and these amazing pierogis. Not even 20 dollars.

My dessert was very classy.

And thus closed my last night in Warsaw!

Sunday, October 15, 2017

berlin

At long last... I have organized my pictures from this year's Europe trip. 

The following combine my iPhone 7 pictures with my Canon pictures. You will likely be more impressed with iPhone photos thanks to the HDR.

Brandenburg Gate selfie is a must.


Berlin Wall Memorial with a fellow selfie fan.



The museum alongside the Memorial.

More of the original wall, this time at the Topography of Terror.

@ the Topography Terror. Needless to say, this was not the most uplifting day.

Stumbled (accidentally) into the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe.

Random art installations were abound in Berlin.

Very impressive to see Brandenburg in person. Even cooler to run through!!

Then meandered to the East Side Gallery in the evening, a segment of the Berlin Wall that they use for different art installations. Very cool.

On Day 2, started off strong with an amazing breakfast.

Then, I took a nice walk through Kruzeberg to my AirBNB "Experience"...

Which was a guided canoe tour of Berlin! Such a beautiful morning - it was the first day of fall. There were swans and boats that we had to navigate around...

See?! So cool!!!

The view on the water of the Oderbaum Bridge.

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And we rowed right through/under this art display - Molecule Man!

Then we headed over to a Turkish market that only happens twice a week for lunch. So much for no new food before a race! I loved this rowing experience overall by the way. It was a perfect day for it!


Then after rowing, I went to the race expo, the heading back to the AirBNB to refresh myself/charge my phone, and then headed back out, finding myself by the Cathedral for Golden Hour.



Lighting was on point.

Quiet Saturday morning for Day 3.

I had a nice breakfast and took it easy as it was the day before the race...so easy that I don't have any other notable pictures from this day besides the Shakeout Run with Oiselle girls! I think I just went souvenir shopping... 

On the last day, I ran the race then still managed another 8k-9k of steps...

This is probably a good time to point out the weather forecast was completely wrong for this day. The morning was supposed to be clear and the evening rainy, but...it flip flopped.

285 brutal steps up the Victory Column. My intention was to climb this immediately after my race to get an epic post-race photo with my medal but I could barely walk immediately after the race...

Beautiful views of the city.

Love the yellow of the trees. This was where we started and finished the Marathon.


The marketing material was not photoshopped.

Great sunset for the last night in Berlin.