I'm a Canadian girl from Vancouver who studied in Paris in 2011-2012. I did a lot of travelling in France and in Europe generally. These are my photos, my observations, and my stories.

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Je suis canadienne de Vancouver qui a étudié à Paris en 2011-2012. J'avais beaucoup voyagé en France et en Europe ; voici mes photos, mes remarques et mes histoires.

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Check the "Index of City Tags" page to browse my posts by city/country.

Regardez la page « Index of City Tags » si vous voulez trier mes postes par ville / pays d'origine.

June 12th
07:57

Wilhelmstraße, the “evil street” of the Nazi era in Berlin, Germany.

Until 1945, Wilhelmstraße was the site of the administrative centre of Berlin. Very little, if any, of the original buildings remain today, since it was heavily bombed by the Allies during World War II (and what remained was then destroyed by the GDR).

Photo 1 : A photo of the Wilhelmstraße street sign at Leipzigerstraße. You can see some of the ultra-modern buildings behind it.

Photo 2 : Part of the “Topography of Terrors”, a free public exhibit located near the remains of the Berlin Wall (which also crosses Wilhelmstraße). The exhibit is actually on the grounds of the former Gestapo/SS headquarters and shows the crimes committed by Hitler’s secret police.

Photo 3 : The single Nazi-era building on Wilhelmstraße to survive air raids by the Allies. This was the Luftwaffe Headquarters under the command of Hermann Göring during WWII. Today, it’s the modern location of the Ministry of Finance.

Photo 4 : It looks like a pleasant little residential square with a kiddy park, but this little courtyard just off of Wilhelmstraße was built on the grounds of Hitler’s Chancellery. Underneath this courtyard was Hitler’s bunker, where he spent his last days… and where he ultimately committed suicide with his new wife, Eva Braun/Hitler.

Photo 5 : Another view of the same courtyard built over Hitler’s bunker (which was filled in with concrete by the Soviets after the war). Somewhere near this spot is where Hitler’s staff attempted to cremate his body after his suicide. Not such a cheerful little courtyard anymore, is it?

Aside from being the location of the Gestapo and SS Headquarters, the Luftwaffe Headquarters, Hitler’s Chancellery, and Hitler’s bunker, Wilhelmstraße also housed the Propaganda Ministry, run by Joseph Goebbels.

Evil street, indeed!

(Photos taken by me, 14 May 2012.)

May 28th
22:09

Historical Recaps : Berlin

Some of you might know that I’ve recently returned from a week-long trip to Berlin, Germany. It’s an amazing, young, and dynamic city… but with a horribly dark past.

It’s taken me a long time to gather my photos and notes about the trip… not because there were too many, but because for some of them I really needed time to distance myself before revisiting them.

For instance, the Sachsenhausen concentration camp just outside the city… well, how do I even begin to post about that? It took me ten days to even be able to look at those photos again. I can’t just do my normal bit where I post the photos without context, or with a couple sentences of explanation at the bottom. Nor could I really fit the experience into a single post.

So, I’m going to do some historical recap posts under two categories: first, the Berlin Wall, and afterwards, Sachsenhausen. Each category will have a few sub-posts where I’ll talk about (and/or post photos from) different aspects of these topics. Maybe… two times a week?

I’ll start soon with Part I on the Berlin Wall : Checkpoint Charlie.