My monthiversary has come and gone. It has been a genuine whirlwind of a start to Berlin, so much so that the idea of an evening at home, tucked up in bed, with a cup of tea, catching up on one of my Danish crime dramas is exceptionally appealing. But social needs must.
Within the whirlwind of events, supermarket shopping has hit me the most. Maybe I had adapted too much to home comforts, where the magic Scottish fridge re-filled itself and I hardly ever set foot in a supermarket, or maybe it’s all just a part of acclimatisation, but I really am untalented at food shopping in Berlin.
I’ve never been a good food shopper. After ‘a weekly massage’, ‘hiring a personal food shopper’ would be high up on my list of ‘Things I will do when I am rich’. I go, I buy things which take my fancy, spur of the moment purchases, and then, undoubtedly, forget the two things I specifically set out for. I return with a selection of products, yet never enough ingredients to make a proper meal.
The problem I have with Berlin is that there is too much choice! For example, I set out to buy some oats. A simple enough task, I hear you all cry. But alas, it is not. There are Biological Oats (I know right, what?), Fresh Crunchy Oats, Free-range Oats, Finely ground ones, Pre-cooked and boiled oats, Ready-to-make-porridge oats, and so on and so forth. It took me half an hour to sift through them all, and I’m pretty sure I still ended up buying something similar to biological oats, which, as far as I am concerned, cannot exist. They are oats, not chickens.
As for the rest of the month, I’ll briefly fill you in on some of my escapades.
I began by gatecrashing my friends’ romantic weekend away in Berlin, by booking the same flight. Yay for third-wheeling airport breakfasts. I was then happily reunited with my friend, Charlotte, who is also now my Berlin neighbour. This month wouldn’t have been anything like as much fun ohne sie.
Then, there’s the rabbit, Amélie, the anti-social house bunny. Personally, I think she needs another rabbit friend to teach her some ‘it’s actually rude to bite people’ skills.
Luckily, my other flatmate, Ana, is more talkative and fortunately on the same wave-length of craziness as me. She is also an amazing violinist. Thus, I have decided to fill the role as her ‘groupie’ and have been enjoying many wonderful concerts in the stunning Berlin Konzerthaus.
It’s possible that I have consumed more sushi and miso soup in the past month, than in the rest of my entire life so far. I have also played more board games than ever before and my new favourite is Bohnanza, where you have to collect as many groups of beans as possible; I mean, what’s not to like? Any respectable German will have a board games shelf in their house.
Flea markets and vintage shops are plentiful and full of things you never knew you needed before. Like my new (vintage new, obviously) yellow fisherman-style rain jacket, which I want to wear now, at all times, come rain or shine.
There was the Hamam evening, complete with body peeling and I have never felt as silky smooth as I do right now, and the massage wasn’t as traumatising as my last one, in Morocco.
Germans do breakfast well. And bread. And cake. The dream.
I’m yet to actually play ping pong here, which is extremely upsetting. The city is teeming with ping pong tables, but luckily, I now have a bet on the table, with a certain German, for a bottle of Gin, so I’d better start training.
Tchibo. For those who know me, I need say no more. Apart from the fact that there is now a member’s club card. I must work out how to get one.
I accidentally ate some of my date’s tacos before I realised that I had, in fact, ordered a burrito. He returned from the bathroom to find a bite in one of them. Caring is sharing, after all. We have not met since.
Life lessons: Supermarket shopping needs more work, but regardless of only having biological oats and a few biological bananas in the house, I am so grateful I had the chance to move to Berlin and can’t wait to explore more/ consume all the Kaffee und Kuchen in the city.