Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations in Berlin and Expectations for Sydney!


This is how the week breaks down:

Every Monday I will break down one of my favorite Episodes of No Reservations and talk about what I learned from it and why it is my favorite.

Then you’ll definitely want to join in the conversation on Tuesdays as we talk about what happened the night before!

Also, you’ll want to follow me on twitter @sojournerabroad so that we can talk live during the new episodes!

Don’t forget to look at our “Anthony Bourdain’s Final Tour” page for a list of all of Bourdain related posts.

What I learned from Berlin:

Anthony Bourdain Final TourGermany.  What an exciting and storied country.  We have previously discussed our top places to go to in Germany, but the truth is we all have some sort of preconceived notions of Germany, especially in the United States.  Whenever we talk about World War I, World War II, or the cold war, it is impossible to avoid discussing Germany.  I think that, along with Russia, we sometimes characterize Germany as the bad guys in our mind, when the reality is far different.  The people living in Germany now are not Nazis, hopefully most of us know and believe this.  Berlin in particular, however, does show many scars from the Cold War era.

Despite being over twenty years since the end of the cold war, it is apparent that it is a part of the city’s past.  Pictured at the beginning of this post is a picture of the west side of the berlin wall as it once stood.  You can see the graffiti that has become an iconic part of the Cold War era.

One of the most thought provoking parts of this entire episode is when Bourdain is talking to Nigel Dunkly, a British man that used to work espionage in Cold War Berlin.  He says that despite the wall being torn down in 1990, many people believe the wall still exists in the minds of the citizens.  A mental barrier that people have a hard time overcoming still to this day.

Bourdain makes it a point to visit some of the Soviet Monuments/War Memorials still in Berlin today.  It is very apparent that many Germans look at these monuments with mixed feelings… both in remember where they have came from and looking into the world as it is today.

This is the big take away from this episode.  Bourdain wants to make it a point that just because a place (like Germany) has a past, one that we may not agree with or were on the opposing side of, doesn’t mean that we should avoid visiting.  Their past doesn’t define them, as much as our past does not define us.

My two favorite things about German culture from this episode:

1. While markets are great places to learn about culture no matter what country you are in, in Germany the major hangout/social center is often the Beer Gardens.  Bourdain visits Prater Garten  which is the oldest and largest beer garden in Berlin.

2. When out to dinner with anyone in German, it is important that before beginning to eat/drink that you cheers (or in German ‘Prost!’) while looking everyone in the eyes.  It is a sign of mutual respect and important in Germany!

My Expectations for Sydney:

Here are my top 5 Expectations for tonight:

1) A crazy amount of seafood.  We all know Tony loves seafood and I find it hard to believe that he won’t eat it everywhere he goes.

2) Sharks. We’ve all seen the commercials for the final tour and the diving with sharks has to be in Sydney.

3) Walkabout references.  It’s just an obscure enough and artsy topic that I could see this being a center theme of the episode (much like Dante’s Inferno during the Tuscany episode).

4) Dingos, Wallabies, and Kangaroos.  All of those animals that we forget are real living so far away from them.  I can only hope for a Seinfeld reference, “maybe the Dingo ate your baby!”

5) Some sort of escape from the big city to get to know the outback!

What are your expectations for tonight?

**Pictures courtesy wikipedia

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