Awww you guys have come back to visit again!? Geez that’s nice.
Since you’re here. Let’s talk about our first week in Berlin.
Berlin shocked us, spanked us and thrilled us from the instant we arrived. And, of course, we LOVE it.
The excitement began with being hopelessly lost tourists, dazed by the size and intensity of the HBF station. And not much has changed since.
Despite that dramatics prior to leaving Australia, we have a fabulous apartment, a hop skip and jump from Alexanderplatz and smack bang in the middle of the action. #winning
Our plans for the first day or two in Berlin were just to wander. We wanted to explore the streets, get our bearings, discover and taste our way around. Weeks later and we are still doing the same thing, and still finding new at each turn. We lucked out on our first night here and ate at a restaurant entirely based around Saigon Street Food. Décor was insane, fake power lines low hanging over all the tables, chinese lanterns, crates as stools, produce in baskets and buckets everywhere and multi coloured lights illuminating the place. The food was fast, peculiar but incredibly tasty, and the cocktails were STRONG. *Think whiskey sour without the egg, sugar or half the normal amount of lemon juice… We wandered home full and tipsy, Berlin spanked us again.
The days that followed were of a similar fashion. Walking so much our legs ache as we crawl into bed each night from full days of exploring. We have been soaking in as much of the people, the fashion, the food and the urban landscape as we can.
A standout day in our first week was spent in East Berlin. It was a Saturday and we hopped on a train to a new part of Berlin to explore. Since beginning our Berlin research back in Australia, East Berlin had sparked our interest. The vibe is different, the scenery is different, the experience is different. It has a wild feel, strong youth culture presence, resistance to the ordinary and seems to be one giant canvas for any and all types of self expression.
Our day here began at a local market, we wondered through sampling some heavenly quark parfaits and watching the locals. Next stop for us was our own street art tour. We had a hit list on our phone and we decided to make our own way through the streets, at our own pace. Man we saw some stuff! Berlin is so bloody colourful, in a grungy kind of way.
Part of our self guided tour included the remaining part of the Berlin Wall, the East Side Gallery. Our first of many thought provoking historic sights. We wandered along taking it all in. Most of what remains is covered in murals by local artists, commissioned when the artist councils from both East and West merged. All pieces are politically inspired and really (excuse the pun) paint a damn good picture on life and emotions during the time of the segregation, and what was hoped for the future.
From here we wondered across the bridge, located more of the large scale street art we’d heard about and wondered some more.
We found a restaurant on a main corner in Kreuzberg, perfect for a late lunch. Here we enjoyed our meals and our mojitos with a side of people watching. An hour or so later, a couple of mojitos down. Courtney had overindulged and like usual, was one sip away from public nuisance lock up. *Zak took me to a park to sleep it off.
Upon waking we continued our journey through Kreuzberg and ended up at Urban Spree. A market + beer garden + live music site + gallery + artist residence + tattoo parlour. The gallery specifically features local artists, and artwork of mixed mediums. We explored light installations, film, photography, drawings and illustrations, paint and sculpture. Afterwards we took a seat, ordered a few beers and watched some damn good live music. Young bands, with way too much swagger and talent. *Check it: Birthday and Bounty Island.
The rest of our first week consisted of slightly more serious bizness. Visa Prep. This required sober brains, paperwork, fine print reading and document folders. Ew.
All in all in all in all – IT WAS ALL WORTH IT
On Tuesday 16 August, we were granted our German Working Holiday Visa and temporary European resident permits! SÜPER! It was a damn long day, but we got there and now the pressure is off. We are here, it’s official, and and we fucking happy chappies!
Best end of the week. So happy to be able to say it’s official!
Große liebe xo