Monday, 28 April 2014

Dienstag und Freitag: Hackescher Markt and Biergarten at Tiergarten

New York may be the city that never sleeps, but Berlin is definitely the city that doesn't stop partying, which should go some way towards explaining my absence over the past few days. On Thursday Oli and I intended to go on a hike with Nana's German class. Unfortunately we woke up far too late, so contented ourselves with ditching lessons (sorry, Dad) and spent the day wandering around the leafy streets of Hackescher Markt.

Hackescher Markt is only an S-Bahn stop away from the bleak concrete consumer frenzy of Alexanderplatz, but the atmosphere is completely different. Berlin natives kick back and drink cheap beer from the Kiosks on the grass inclines overlooking the Spree, tourists leisurely wander in and out of the museums and hat vendors smoke cigarettes on the bridge whilst half-heartedly flogging their wares. We spent an afternoon reclining on the grass outside the cathedral and testing each others Deutsch (still schlecht). We didn't visit any of the museums, though. Perhaps next time.

As night drew in, we ventured homewards and stopped at the East Side Gallery to drink beer, smoke far too much and contemplate just how fucking weird it is that only 25 years ago passing through the gap between Warschauer Str and the Pirates Berlin bar would have been impossible. It's all too easy to forget that within our lifetimes the city was brutally divided. The East Side Gallery is a start reminder of the amazing recovery Berlin has made in such a short space of time.

My baby-friend Ursi arrived back in Berlin on Friday, and invited us to join her and her boyfriend Max for a quiet drink at the Cafe am Neue in Tiergarten. It's a gorgeous - and bloody huge - cafe situated by der Neue See (or the New Lake), and is strewn with fairy lights, and multi-coloured boat houses. We arrived just a tad too late to snap any decent photos, but we'll definitely be heading back there very soon to rent one of the tiny, barely seaworthy rowing boats.

Bis bald (bis morgen is far too optimistic),

Betti Baudelaire xxx

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