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Donnerstag!

Matt Dodaro and Mark Turpin- We arrived at the train station a little later than usual. Professor Byrnes allowed us to sleep in until 9 today, instead of the usual 8 o'clock meeting time. Another pleasant change today, too! our surprise, we did not spend our day in Berlin. For the first time this trip, we traveled outside the capital to a large city named Potsdam. This was by far the nicest part of the trip. The beautiful city is filled with numerous castles and gardens. After the rush off one of the three public transportations, Proffesor Byrnes was the first of hundreds to get tickets for the tour of Friedrich IV's summer residence. The short tour of this Rocco architecture style in German was insightful of the history of this important German landmark. We followed the tour with a walk through the vast gardens surrounding the castle with a small lunch at a nearby Imbiss Stand. After lunch, we decided as a group to spend the next few hours walking through the magnificent gardens. During this hike we stumbled upon many beautfiful landmarks including the Orangeria, an enormous palace which is used as a greenhouse. Throughout the day we saw several other historically important buildings, including the famous Chinese Teahouse, the Friedenskirche (Peace Church), and numerous monuments. However, despite the plethora of time we put into the landmarks in Potsdam, we needed much more time to appreciate the history and beauty of everything we visited.

After a long day in the historical part of Potsdam, we proceeded to the Fussgängerzone which was a mile-long stretch of numerous shops for us to purchase food, clothing and souvenirs. We ended the day there, and then proceeded back to Berlin where, most of us, went straight to sleep after the rigorous day of touring Potsdam. Others however went to shoot some hoops with the local German crowd, where they learned vital information about the nightlife of the city. On the way to a tasty dinner of Döner and Pizza however, we ran into Prof. Tucker and we wound up in our local bar the funky retro, "zu mir oder zu dir". Some of the guys checked out the local club scene to prepare for the weekend, while the others held down the bar. With our new found information we walked back to the hostel to catch some rest before another beautiful, but tiring day, soaking in all our surroundings in this unique experience.