Saturday, April 27, 2013

Day 2 in Bern, Einstein House & Museum

I saw most of Bern's sights yesterday on my self-guided walking tour, I briefly considered going to Lucerne, a little over an hour away by train, I decided not to because of the rainy weather.  I woke up later than usual,  around 9 am, I stayed in bed until almost 10 am, there was no rush to get started today.

I left the hostel around 10:30 am in search of breakfast, I stopped at a grocery store and bought a poulet sandwich, poulet is chicken in French.  I had the poulet sandwich yesterday, I knew it was good, it was lunch time, I decided to eat lunch food.  I figured out what poulet meant when I asked the woman at the supermarket yesterday.  I said what is poulet, she thought about it and said, it is poulet, I thought about it and said chicken? She said, yes.  I bought the poulet sandwich when I saw a Swiss man buy it, I figured it was good, it was.  I did the same thing with the Swiss Chocolate I bought today, I saw a Swiss woman buy it, I assumed she knew what was good, it was.

I went back to my hostel with my poulet sandwich, called my mom on magic jack using my computer.  After I talked to my mom and ate my poulet sandwich, I headed out for the day, by then it was after noon.  My first destination was Albert Einstein's house while he lived in Bern, Switzerland.  I learned Einstein moved 6 times while in Switzerland, but this was the house he lived in the longest.

Me at Einstein House
After visiting the Einstein House, I walked across Bern to the Bern History and Albert Einstein Museum. Bern is small, it probably took me about ten minutes to get from the Einstein House to the Museum.  On the way to the museum, I got to take in more of Bern's amazing scenery, even on a cloudy, rainy day, Bern is a beautiful city.

Aare River on my way to Bern History/Einstein Museum 
I spent about two hours in the Einstein Museum, I did not look at the other exhibits in the museum.  The museum recounts Einstein's life, it begins with his Jewish heritage, explaining Einstein was not religious but identified with the Jewish community and supported its causes. At one point I thought I was in the exhibit, the exhibit focused almost exclusively on Judaism without any mention of Einstein. Every now and then there was an Einstein reference so I figured I was in the right place, and the Einstein Museum is a self-contained Museum within the Bern history museum.

The Einstein Museum had information on Einstein's school performance, he was not always the best student, sometimes found school boring.  The museum even had some of Einstein's report cards. I learned some interesting facts about Einstein at the museum, the United States Government deemed Einstein a security risk after he emigrated to the US, excluding him from the Manhattan project.  Einstein was also under FBI surveillance and the US considered expelling him, the FBI compiled a 2000 page file on Einstein.  All things I can relate to.  

Albert Einstein under FBI Surveillance 
I left the Bern History & Einstein Museum around 3:30 pm, I learned a lot about Einstein I did not know, I enjoyed the exhibit.  I stopped by the supermarket I got the poulet sandwich and got a pizza wrap. I went back to my hostel, took a shower, relaxed for a few minutes and then I went back out. I stopped at Gamestop, the first Gamestop I have seen in Europe.  The Gamestop does not have the selection you would find in the US, and some games are about $20 more expensive. I noticed games are more expensive in Europe at all the gaming stores I have gone to.

Me in front of Gamestop in Bern
I had a quiet evening, the English movie tonight was the Bucket List.  I did not see the entire movie because I went to get something for dinner and it took me awhile to find any stores that were open.  I did not want to go to a restaurant or cafe for a formal dinner, plenty of those were open in downtown Bern, although not the number you would find in a big city.  However, all other stores were closed, the supermarket was closed, I was surprised the city had shut down before 8 pm on a Saturday night. The street I walked down earlier in the day was packed, at 7pm it was almost empty.

I found dinner at the train station, when all else fails, Europe's major rail stations have food shops, I even bought a salad, something I should do more often. I packed my dinner into my backpack, headed back to the hostel in the rain, I had missed the first part of the Bucket List, I did not really watch any of the movie, but what I saw, it looks like a movie worth watching, maybe I will once I finish my Europe tour. 

Day 2 in Bern Photo Album

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