I was a little unprepared for Berlin this year. I got back from London late Thursday night, unpacked, crashed, got up, packed again. Got in a taxi, got on a bus, got on a plane. Slept from take-off to landing (to think I was once a nervous flyer). Woke up in Germany.
The picture above was the first thing we went to. 3 tiny Japanese musicians. Standing in a bright circle around the band was great for people checking out who was checking them out, but it would have been better in a darker, closer set-up. Afterward, we went to Wowzville for some straight up-and-down swampy blues rock from New Zealand (before the encore, the harmonica player goes “Band Meeting Band Meeting” in a perfect Murray accent).
I didn’t know the defunct Tempelhof airport had been turned over to the public. You can’t access the main building by day, but the runways are full of cyclists, skaters and rollerbladers. As it’s so exposed, the wind can be tremendous. Going down the runway was fantastic. Coming back is where you earn it.
My first roller-derby was mostly spent trying to understand the rules. I got the gist, but the subtleties were lost on me. Lots of breakdowns where officials stand around discussing rule interpretation. It was neither as fast or furious as I expected, but fun nonetheless.
UK beer tastes like poison after time spent in Germany. We drank a fair bit over the 4 days, albeit at a slow pace, but I never felt even slightly hungover. And I slept like a baby. I came back, met a friend for a couple of beers Tuesday night and felt like dogshit the next day.
Some great food and service at a Jamaican restaurant Sunday night. Bread is dense like madeira cake. I had a very decent chowder-style thing. But Miss Saigon on Skalitzer strasse is only viable if you like staggering amounts of coriander (I’m one of those that can’t stand it in anything but the smallest amount). Judging by the turnover there on a Monday night, most of Berlin disagree with me.
Anyway, happy times as always, Berlin.