Berlin was great, even when I couldn't see it and was simply fighting my way down the street inhaling snowflakes. I am back home now, here's what has stuck in my head about the trip:
• Berlin snow is drier and whiter than the stuff we get at home, this makes it really easy to see how much urination happens outside
• many Lady Berliners look a lot like Christine Keener which was nice because I have quite a crush on Ms Keener
• there are loads of shops selling good quality leather footwear - all of them identical
• Berlin is heaving with Christmas markets, the whole population must be drunk on Glühwein fumes throughout December. I consulted this guide to decide which one to go to and was very tempted to try the Hanukkah Market, partly because the guide told me that I'd find puppet shows and live music celebrating the rededication of the temple in Jerusalem more than 2,000 years ago. Cause nothing says “we won the holy war” like a puppet show.
• I was warned that Japanese and Vietnamese cuisine is considered passé by Berliners these days - right now it's all about Korea and bibimbap. I was too busy eating strudel and spatzle for such exotica.
• there's a lot of art happening in Berlin - unfortunately I didn't make it to the Hamburger Bahnhof where they are collecting urine from the reindeer which make up the current exhibition there. Apparently reindeer urine is halucinogenic and punters with $1,000 can pay to stay overnight and try this delicacy.
...I appear to have started and ended my list with wee.
Why does everyone go on about how bad the sun is for the skin. My skin loves sun and looks all relaxed and happy when it's been out in it, the cold however, is something else again. I walked off the plane in Germany and straight into temperatures of minus eighty. My face hates it, my eyelids have developed uneven droopy bits, I look pinched and raw and witchy, my nose is glowing like a beacon.
It warmed up enough to start snowing when I got up in the morning, thick fluffy flakes. I love snow and I am here to sightsee so I rolled* straight outside into Berlin - I couldn't see it but I knew it was there - I could smell the pastries.
Help, I can,t use German typewriters and my euro-in-the-slot is running out ... *I knew it would be cold so method of packing for this trip was to wear all of my clothes - I have learned that this makes locomotion tough-going.