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  • Day10

    Berlin Marathon

    September 24, 2017 in Germany ⋅ ⛅ 14 °C

    Today was marathon day!! Brett was off to the race early this morning and we didn't see him at breakfast... I'm going to ask him to recount his experience of the race later but this post will be our perspective on it.

    The rest of our group had breakfast at 7:30, finalizing the details of our spectator tour for the day. Kelly and Tyler had two options for the route but they chose the one that spread out the viewings the most.

    We walked north from our hotel to the 8km marker. We got there a bit early and got to see the wheelchair and recumbent bike athletes go by first (really amazing to use arm strength alone for the marathon). Next were the olympians followed pretty closely by Brett! It was lots of fun to cheer him on all morning and I think we all got a bit emotional. As soon as he passed by, we were starting a race of our own to make sure we got to the next stop in enough time.

    Did I mention that it was raining? If not, it's safe to say that if I don't mention the weather, then default is rain. We rushed down into the train station because Tyler spotted the correct train was already there. I was running after him and completely fell right before the door to the train. It was like sliding into a base (which for the record I've probably never done before). Mostly impacted my derrière and my left elbow. Very quickly assessed that nothing was broken (would have definitely hurt more if I had).

    We took the U bahn south to next view him at km 19. More cheering in our Canadian gear ensued. After that, we headed back to the subway (albeit a bit more cautiously). We took the U Bahn further west and exited at km 32. We were a bit concerned that time was tight and we didn't want to miss him so we ran close to one km opposite of the race path. We passed the Olympians as they went by before settling on a spot to stop and watch for Brett. We hadn't fully informed him of our location plans and I'm not sure if he expected us at that area. After he passed, it was back to the train.

    Next we had to take the S bahn east with a connection to our intended last viewing point. The first train came quickly in 2 minutes. We were disappointed to see the next train for our connection would be in 15 minutes. Calculating from where Brett was on the track and how long our commute would take, we knew it would be tight.

    The train took us to the Brandenburg station where we ran to catch Brett one more time before the end of the race. We were ready about 3 minutes before he passed by... phew!

    Following that we headed at a leisurely pace to the "family reunion area." After a few minutes, Brett joined us in his silver Berlin marathon poncho. A personal best time of 2:36:35. Incredible!

    We walked to Berliner Republik for the customary post-race beer with Brett. A much deserved liter of Paulaner! I tried a Zwick'l at the suggestion of Brett's friend Stephan who now lives in Berlin. It was yummy! We had lunch there (Tyler's turn to have roulade and I had soup and sausages).

    We headed back to the hotel for a brief rest so Brett could shower. I made the mistake of actually having a nap and really struggled to get up and go. The rest of the afternoon was spent seeing bits of the Berlin Wall. We took the subway to the East Side Gallery, a long stretch of murals representing the wall. There were some very interesting sections. We then decided to head to the north segment of wall. They also have a memorial to the victims of the wall there and we spent some time reading the posted information. By this point, all of us were pretty tired and so we went back to the hotel for another brief rest before dinner. We had our last German meal at the Augustiner beer hall. I ended up having salad but Tyler is still going strong on the German food (Goulash and spaetzle). When we finished dinner it was already quite late and so we headed to bed. A busy last day in Berlin before our journey to Prague tomorrow!!!
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