We've been told that it doesn't snow much in Montenegro, so we were very happy that our first full day in Berlin was a nice snowy one. After spending most of Tuesday either in airports (we spent about 7 hours in the Belgrade airport waiting on our connecting flight) or on airplanes, we were so happy to be wandering around in the open air.
Our main purpose for coming to Berlin at this time was to see the Christmas Markets we missed last year (by three days!). We discovered during our sojourn in the city that there are several areas where these markets are located, but the main one is located around the Kaiser Memorial Church. This church was built to commemorate the marriage of the Kaiser, and had beautiful mosaics depicting that event. It was bombed during WWII, and preserved in it's battered state as a memorial.
There are many wonderful things at the market. Yummy food such as roasted chestnuts, chocolate covered strawberries and bananas, candied nuts and dried fruits, decorated cookies, marzipan, bratwurst, and various hot beverages.
Then there are the beautiful handmade crafts from local and international artisans. Within a few steps of each other you can purchase lovely scarves from India, olivewood creches from Israel, Russian nesting dolls, and handblown glass balls and animal figurines, jewelery, puppets, straw ornaments and wooden "rauchen" men ("smoking men" they are hollow, and you put incense cones in and when they burn smoke comes out of their carved pipes) and candle fans (I'm not sure what their called, here is a large example at right, the wind from the candle flame causes the fan at the top to turn the figures, rather like a merry-go-round) from Germany. They really know how to deck the halls in Germany. We certainly we put in the Christmas mood.