A week of pic 'n' mix and some Berliner Schnauze

Hello, World!

Truth be told… I don’t really know what to say about the past week. It was a bit of a mixed bag with great moments and bad, and maybe nothing specific to summarise. My thoughts are therefore a little scrambled, but nonetheless I will just pick out a couple of things that stood out.

I went to see a lot of films at the cinema, 4 to be precise. The highlight of these was no doubt Carol (2015) by Todd Haynes, which is based on the novel The Price of Salt by Patricia Highsmith, Maultasche and I were invited to the premiere of this movie by a kind friend, and I have to say I absolutely loved it.  I was carried back to the 1950’s watching this love story between two women, which is vividly narrated in melodrama style. I am a sucker for the ‘50s anyway, but every frame in this movie is so beautifully illustrated and adorned with sound, that you won’t resist the charm even if you’re not into retro ;-) 

I had a lovely pic ‘n mix lunch of mezze at Knofi, a Mediterranean- inspired delicatessen in Bergmann Kiez (again recommended by my nice friend Rachel). This place has dips, lovely breads and hummus, but the olives where A-mazing – nuff said!

The interior of Knofi

I cherished my obsession with autumnal leaves whilst I took a quick trip to Rathaus Reinickdorf for some very exciting paperwork ;-) and randomly visited the Schwerbelastungskörper in the Schöneberg area of Berlin. This is an enormous cylindrical chunk of concrete that Hitler built to test how much weight the ground could hold during his Germania mania (hihi). It is a daunting more than exciting ‘site’ ideated by a very ‘sensible’ guy, and if anything it is more evidence that this Austrian cherub (not ;-) had a tendency to get carried away in more ways than one.

More beautiful yellowness

Finally, after nearly two years of trying to sugar coat the famous Berliner unfriendliness and general rudeness - today I gave up on it.  I have tried in the past to be overly kind, pretending I don’t care, apologising (don’t try this btw it will get you even more abuse), and shouting back when I was desperado. NOTHING WORKED. And I will NEVER fully accept just how overall miserable some people in Berlin are about working in customer service (I am generalising, obviously there are exceptions).

Yes, many have told me that you simply have to be rude back- but I refuse this out of principle! Today however – I found a solution. For the umpteenth time I had found myself embarrassedly mumbling in German to the lady at the bakery. Something along the lines of the typical shop charade here: “Sorry that I exist, can I please have a bread roll, the one closest to your arm so it’s not too much effort?”

And then I had it, I just burst out laughing. At how ridiculous the whole scenario was, and at how ridiculous that after two years of living here I was still intimidated. Obviously this threw the bakerette completely off and she just stood there staring at me like I was some strange sort of mediterannean puppet without an off-switch. Anyway, I don’t think my laughing made her feel any better (and for god’s sake don’t try smiling!) – I think she merely thought I was crazy. But, to make a long story short, it definitely made MY day a hell of a lot better.  See ya later!

 

Addresses:

Knofi

Oranienstraße 179

10999 Berlin