Fotoeins Fotografie

faces of home & place-story

Posts tagged ‘My Berlin’

Booze Bar Berlin, Friedrichshain, Berlin, Germany,

My Berlin: get your drink on at Booze Bar

My friend, Anna, really likes this bar in her neighbourhood. I’m quietly skeptical that any bar is really that good, but I’m game for a drink tonight, and more importantly, I’m polite. The sign greeting us at the entrance is a simple hand-written sign.

“No Shisha, no HappyHour, no Shit: betreutes Trinken …”

“Betreut” has multiple definitions, including “curated”, “maintained”, or “looked after.” I (choose to) interpret the phrase “betreutes Trinken” as “customers will not be served shitty drinks.”

Booze Bar Berlin is already my kind of place.

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Denkmal fuer die ermordeten Sinti und Roma Europas, Memorial to Murdered Sinti and Romas in Europe, Dani Karavan, Tiergarten, Berlin, Germany,

My Berlin: Moving Memorial to Murdered Sinti and Roma

In the German capital city, among the rustling of tall trees is a quiet space in the northeast corner of Tiergarten Park adjacent to the Reichstag. Between the chirps and whistles of small birds, a recording of a violin plays. Individual notes are held, as long as possible, as if life depended upon the existence of each note. Slowly, the sound accumulates into a keening wail, burrowing deep (if you let it) and tearing from within (if you feel it). You’d do well not to stumble, as you gingerly move through the memorial, careful not to step on words like “Auschwitz”. Inscribed on flattened stones spreading out from the pond are the names of important places, critical to maintaining memory, with intention and purpose.

Created by Dani Karavan, the Memorial to Murdered Sinti and Roma consists of a circular pond. At the centre is a triangular slab on which fresh flowers are placed. In a ring around the pond are the words of a poem, “Auschwitz”, by writer and composer, Santino Spinelli, a member of the Italian Sinti and Roma.

Muj šukkó, kjá kalé vušt šurde; kwit. Jilo čindó bi dox, bi lav, nikt ruvbé.

Drenperdo Mui, phagede Jakha, schiel Wuschtia; Pokunipen. Phagedo Dschi, kek Ducho, kek Labensa, kek Asvia.

Eingefallenes Gesicht, erloschene Augen, kalte Lippen. Stille. Ein zerrissenes Herz, ohne Atem, ohne Worte, keine Tränen.

Pallid face, dead eyes, cold lips. Silence. A broken heart without breath, without words, no tears.

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My Berlin: Schöneberg

Above/featured: Entrance to U-Bahnhof Rathaus Schöneberg.

It seems as universal as the common opinion about how cool and interesting Berlin is.

Both residents and visitors mention the same names in conversations throughout the city: Prenzlauer Berg, Mitte, Friedrichshain, Kreuzberg, Neukölln, and the hybrid “KreuzKölln”, even as Wedding and Lichtenberg begin weaving their way into the dialogue.

Of the neighbourhoods within the city’s Ring, what about Charlottenburg or Schöneberg? The answers often arrive as expected. Why would anyone visit there or live there? It’s boring! It’s too quiet! It’s dead! Lots of sniffy snobby dismissive exclamation points! That few choose the area is precisely why I’m in Schöneberg for three months at the tail end of my year-long around-the-world.

For many in Berlin, they’re living, working, and playing in areas where they’re close to the action and housing costs may on average be slightly cheaper. There’s something to be said about proximity and small “stumbling distances” after a night of drinking. For some, Schöneberg is too far, too expensive, too quiet, or all of the above. I don’t mind the 20-, 30-, or 45-minute travel times to places where friends eat, drink, or hang out.

It’s always a matter of choice for me to be in Schöneberg. There’s a comfortable stillness here that always sets me at ease, where I can tune out or turn down the noise, and find my calm. For a very special time, this area in Berlin, “der schöne Schöneberg,” is home.

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My Berlin: In Neukölln for Two Christmas Markets

The simple truth is out there: Berlin is massive. Though local transport options provide easy access to all one might hope to see, eat, drink, or do in the German capital city, fact is, my to-do lists have never shrunk, and it’s all I can do to keep up. The task seems almost impossible in a short stay, but that’s never stopped me from trying.

Why I haven’t spent more time in the borough of Neukölln is a minor mystery. Perhaps, it’s my long-honed instincts to avoid the new wave, to focus once more on the old wave. Perhaps, it’s my stubborn contrary nature. But thanks to friends’ recommendations, I’m inside two Christmas markets in Neukölln on two consecutive weekend evenings.

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Berlin Hauptbahnhof, train station, Berlin, Germany,

My Berlin: intentions and (e)motions

I’ve always loved train stations, and Berlin Hauptbahnhof (main train station) is no exception as these Instagram shots show.

When I’m in Berlin, I go out of the way to spend extra time at the train station to watch people, to observe the flow of people in and out of trains and in and out of the train station. Trains enter and leave, passengers do the same in perpendicular fashion. Individual moments of people on their way are combined with sweeping motions to provide a novel form of urban landscape that’s common to all urban train stations, but with indicators unique to the German capital city.

Deutsche Bahn, Regional Bahn, train station, Berlin Hauptbahnhof, Berlin, Germany,

Above …

Berlin Hauptbahnhof, train station, Berlin, Germany,

,,, and below

Berlin Hauptbahnhof, train station, Berlin, Germany,

Circling the photographic display

S-Bahn, S-Bahn Berlin, Berlin Hauptbahnhof, Berlin, Germany,

A momentary lapse of precision

Berlin Hauptbahnhof, train station, Berlin, Germany,

Washingtonplatz | Washington Square

I made the photos above on 27 November 2014. This post appears on Fotoeins Fotopress at as

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