Squiggle: The Berlin Postcard
So few cars, so many bikes and bike paths, lots of *varied* people sharing communal space in a an alternative/hippie/punk way withOUT looking like alternative/hippie/punk cliches (unlike Australia or India). And lots of greenery for a city… more than i have ever seen before (and i drove through 22,000km of Europe in 1984). In fact Berlin does not look like a major city from the air.
Dogs in the park wandered around off leads without shitting or making trouble, my friends bought beer from an elderly Turkish man with an esky on the back of his pushbike (lots of Turkish about). A (straight looking) stranger asked for a cigarette so my friend gave him one and asked in turn asked the stranger if he had any grass… “Yeah sure: a joint’s worth for 2 Euros”.
The black market does not seem so black here.
A Jam session (Krautrock Can-like) amongst some nearby ruins serenaded folk of all ages. And there was not one T-Shirt being worn advertising some corporate logo. i wish i had brough my camera with me to capture the evidence because i am sure this all sounds unbelievable to some of you.
i thought i had given up on cities for the rest of my life but i am already falling in love with Berlin even though my first few hours on arrival here yesterday were quite boring and unpromising… but it is precisely this lack of hype and the working class austerity that is growing on me.
It does not look like i can make money here DJ’ing but the price of living is like Melbourne (not even like overpriced Sydney but *Melbourne*) and there seems to be lots of international artists here just for the lifestyle (and not to make money).
And although wine is $2 a bottle and apparently other drugs are also cheap, i have touched nothing but coffee to cope with my jet lag. i want to be sure that my experience here (or my interpretation of my experience) is unbiased.
it is hard to believe that nobody had up until now been able to explain to me just how much i would enjoy Berlin. But just like falling in love with a woman, perhaps i am kidding myself and the illusion will wear thin, but the facts i’ve outlined above are facts and Berlin really does seem to be an advanced form of civilisation. Advanced enough for a spoiled white dropout like me to remain content with? Well that remains to be seen.
PS/ A week after the above was written, i have yet to find any arts that transcend mediocrity 🙁