Friday, July 27, 2007

Thank Goodness for McDonalds

I noticed I was getting a little depressed in my last days in Prague. Now that I am in Berlin it suddenly makes sense.

I was delighted by some of the parks in Prague - and "delighted" was not too strong a term. I realize now that while there are lots and lots of parks throughout Prague, if you are not in a park there is no green to be seen anywhere. Just block after block of six story buildings with beautiful plaster facades, cobblestone sidewalks and cobblestone streets. Lovely at first, then monotonous and dreary. The parks were almost shocking in contrast.

Also, nobody who lives in Prague ever smiles. At least not in public. Here in Berlin I see the usual mix of people, but I also feel a real energy and see people smiling as they walk down the street. I got an immediate boost to my mood as soon as I got off the train.

Part of the reason I came to Berlin was to experience the night life (don't tell Doug). I went out to a dance club at two in the morning and it was hopping. I danced for more than hour (mostly techno house music at this club) and left at four in the morning as the dance floor was getting too crowded with new arrivals and the sky was getting light.

Which leads me to the title of this post. On my way home I passed a few restaurants that were still open, but wasn't really interested in pork and sauerkraut at this hour of the morning. Then, behind my hotel I came across a McDonalds. The ground floor was the usual McDonalds experience, but the next floor up was their answer to Starbucks, the McCafe. I had a piece of coffee cake and a large hot chocolate - an absolutely perfect end to a fun night out. Thank goodness for McDonalds.

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