on August 25, 2006
Just a 10-minute walk or so from The Westin is Checkpoint Charlie. On my way to visit this famous site, I looked down at the sidewalk and saw stones that mark the former location of the Berlin Wall. These stones are throughout the city, crossing sidewalks, roads, etc. Near Checkpoint Charlie, you can see how the wall shifts direction, creating a zigzag pattern, presumably around former buildings.At Checkpoint Charlie itself, there is the border crossing stand. Soldiers are there now for a paid photo opportunity for tourists. Another site for tourists is a stand where you can get your passport or anything else stamped with the location and date.There are also signs that indicate that you are either entering or leaving the American sector. This area is so rich with a tumultuous history. It's moving to think about the people who lived in Berlin and Germany during the years the wall divided their country.
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