From Ireland to Austria Series: Finally, Regretfully, Leaving Berlin
This is from a series originally posted on my original blog: Seefahrer Thayer. While I don't recommend it, you can view the original posts here. Because the content had value and useful tips I've decided to repost them here, however, they've since been heavily edited and updated.
I spent the entirety of this past week in Berlin... in a great city, with the best hosts you could ask for.
I couldn't tell you much about what I saw, I had two fantastic tour guides- Reemt and Carl that both showed me around the city, but I couldn't keep up with all the names.
So over the last few days here's what's gone down:
I went shopping, no where particularly exciting, but I did get a few things from H&M... I really should have gone inside Ka De Ve... kinda regret the decision not to. It's a shopping mall that takes up the entirety of a city block, with about 6 stories- with an entire floor dedicated to fancy foods.
I learned about how Germans, or maybe just Berliner's, party. It's preposterous to leave the house before 10 or 11 PM. It's even more preposterous to come home before 5:00. I know you're probably thinking, "what? Five AM? That's crazy!" But no, not 5:00 AM. Five PM. As in 17:00 in the afternoon. Seriously. I didn't do this, I can't fathom how anyone could. Either way, the latest I stayed out was until about 5 (AM), which was a fun night out with Ruslan and his friend.
Had lots of döner this trip... all delicious. Ruslan got me to try a drink called something like Aryan? It's like a Greek yoghurt drink, but it's like salty...? So strange. I think it'd be good by itself, but with an already salty meal it was definitely... strange.
Yesterday Theresa and I went to the famous Floh Markt in Mauer Park- it was lots of fun, I got a gorgeous dress, a tote bag, a few other little things, but it was a beautiful day for it. On the way we came across a street band I fell in love with, and definitely need to acquire more music from- Charity Children.
Afterwards, we went shopping (which is practically impossible on a Sunday by the way) for groceries to make a gumbo... but that didn't work at all. We could only find itty bitty shrimp... no crab. So... we got the shrimp and I made something that only slightly resembled and tasted like ettouffe. But they seemed to enjoy it? Maybe they were just being polite. That's fine too.
Don't tell anyone- this is just between you and me- I started getting a little bit sick of beer. I was never a fan of it to begin with, but then we developed a mutual understanding with each other and began to appreciate each other's differences and developed a lovely friendship. Then the day before yesterday the thought of drinking a single sip of beer made me sick. I still went out with Ruslan and his friend and had some, but it took some convincing. Yesterday I bought some wine and cider, which goes against my policy, but I couldn't do it anymore! Beer and I have officially broken up... for now, I guess. But like I said, that's just between you and me. Don't tell the Germans.
I had a hard time leaving this morning for Dresden. Berlin, Theresa, and Ruslan have become like a second home over the last week and I had gotten so comfortable settled down with them. I really had a fantastic time, and definitely need to come back soon.
It was a nice, much needed break, but I am ready to get on my own schedule again, at my own pace- back to calling the shots and acting when I'm ready. I feel much better about my German, I learned a great deal from everyone. I'm using a few German words instinctively, which is kinda cool.
So thank you, Mother Theresa, Ruslan, and Coco. I'll miss Berlin (and you all) terribly.