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July 28, 2015 / Jim Fenton

Europe Day 21: Berlin to London

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Today we only got to visit Berlin for part of the day, before beginning our trip home. It rained part of the day yesterday, but today was the first really rainy day of the trip. We have had really amazing weather.

Suit of armor in the German Historical Museum

Suit of armor in the German Historical Museum

We had planned to take another bus tour (we had paid for it yesterday), but didn’t think we’d see much on a rainy day. Instead, we went to the German Historical Museum. Located in a beautifully appointed building, the museum gives thorough coverage of German history from the early Middle Ages to the present. Given the destruction in Germany at many points in history, we were amazed by the number and quality of artifacts displayed. We had to leave after about two hours, but all agreed that we could have spent much, much more time there. Of the many museums we visited on this trip, we agreed that this was perhaps the favorite.

We caught public transit to Berlin Tegel airport for the flight to London. We sat in Starbucks for a while until our flight was called, and I was disappointed that I couldn’t send or receive email from there. A little investigation revealed that the network was blocking all TCP ports except 80 (http) and 443 (https). So my email, which uses IMAP and authenticated SMTP, wouldn’t go through. When will they understand that the Internet is much more than just the Web?

When we got to Heathrow Terminal 2 “The Queen’s Terminal” (but aren’t they all the Queen’s?), we had a long walk, which seems characteristic of Heathrow Terminal design. We the had a long wait to go through immigration, even though we were coming from an EU country and just staying overnight. I guess that’s what everyone runs into at U.S. immigration as well.

Unlike many airports, Heathrow has a commercial service, rather than complimentary shuttles, connecting the airport with nearby hotels. We took one of these and made it to our hotel for a quick dinner where we reviewed our trip.

This article is part of a series about our recent vacation in Europe. To see the introductory article in the series, click here.

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