Berlin-ingAmsterdam, Spring 2011

I warned you - I'm making up for lost time and hitting the blogosphere hard! Okay, as you may know from previous blog posts, I'm in love with Amsterdam. But, for one weekend, I cheated on my beloved and developed a hardcore crush on somewhere else: Berlin. Where to begin!? Joelle and I headed to Germany to stay with an Au Pair she had when she was younger - the fabulous Inga. When we got to the airport, we ran into a friend of mine from class who was planning a Germany trip of epic proportions - and he let us in on his long list of adventures. Always a delight to run into someone you know! After a smooth flight, we landed in the awesome city and with grumbling stomaches, we dropped our bags off and journeyed off to find some dins. Our appetites were more than satiated with one of the best Indian dinners of my life - spicy and tasty and the cherry on top - it was affordable! Yippee - I was already developing the crush. The next day, we got a sleepy start, showered and headed into town. I must say here that Inga's apartment is heaven - it honestly looks like an Anthropologie Catalogue. And to make things even better, she left out bread, granola and instant coffee - hello heaven! Anyways, after our laziness in Inga's haven was overcome - we headed into the city. It was a bit of a shock at first because Berlin is HUGE! We were used to Amsterdam sizing, but Berlin was a touch massive! Even more shocking was what we witnessed on the train. While we were sitting there, two men got in an insane fist fight right in front of us! There was a dog barking, German shouting and fists flailing! WHAT!?! The two parties parted ways - who knows what the fight was about, but it was definitely a sight to behold! But once the shock of the city's size along with it's underground, subway aggression, was overcome, and we figured out the public transport system (after a touch of a mishap of getting on the wrong train - oops) we headed into town. We decided to find some food first - which proved to be a bit difficult. There were tons of places to go, which makes choosing far too difficult. But our journey to good food made for a great way to get a good sense for the vibes of the city. After a yummy salad - we saw some of the sights, got a lot of coffee, then treated ourselves to a delicious and well deserved dinner. Why was it so deserved, you ask? Well - we had walked our legs off and gotten insanely lost trying to find somewhere! A glass of wine was no mere want - it was a NEED! The next day, we started with the same slow pacing - we were on holidays judgmental folks, there is no need to rush oneself while on vacation - and we headed out to see more sights including checkpoint charlie, the wall, the jewish memorium and a few others. But that was all after having a world-class brunch and a touch of shopping - boutiques there were truly fab! That night, we met up with Inga and grabbed some AMAZING thai. Truly delish. Later, we took in some nightlife and this awesome outdoor bar. We enjoyed some beers while sitting outside and admiring the cool vibes and people. In the same outdoor area, there was a warehouse-like building with two floors. The bottom floor was dedicated to dancing to some familiar electro and mainstream tunes while the top floor had a bar and dancing to more punk and rock songs. I was like a kid in a candy store and danced my little heart out to some alternative, rock hits till the sun came up. Literally. The sun was up when we left to head home. Nightlife in Berlin - check. Sleep - not so much. Needless to say, our noon flight home was a bit of a rough experience, and to make matters worse, when we finally got there Joelle had a bit of a standoff with the train to Centraal. Looking back on it, the ordeal was kind of hilarious, but at the time, we both wanted to cry. What happened was we stopped at Albert Hein to go to grab some snacks then raced over to the train platform. The train was just out the depart and Joelle went to board and stuck out her bag to stop the door - well, the door had no mind of her or her food and closed leaving Joelle's AH bag inside the train while she was outside. There goes her salad and snacks as well as her patience. Like i said, looking back now - funny. At the time, tear inducing. But after another grocery store stop and a second train - we headed back home. What a weekend!! I'll miss you Berlin!!
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