strivetoengage

Living with intent, social engagement, learning, growing, giving

New year’s eve in Berlin

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We had a leisurely start this morning before rugging up and venturing outside into the -2C chilly air. We walked to a play ground near our apartment. Our children played while I jogged to stay warm and my husband shopped in preparation for our new year’s eve family celebration.

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Afterwards we walked around admiring the street art and selecting a café to enjoy. We chose Zeit für brot (time for bread) which is extremely popular and with good reason. We were lucky to get a table and enjoyed good coffee and shared a slice of apple streusel. Afterwards we stood and watched the bakers working in the bakery. It was fascinating. They worked continuously for the hour that we stood there and prepared a variety of types of bread rolls. It’s a physically demanding job and I imagine that they are exhausted after each shift. There was a constant stream of customers queuing out the door; a mixture of German and English speakers.

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We had a lovely breakfast in our apartment of müsli with natural yogurt, banana and fresh milk then walked through the cool shopping district to museum island. When we reached the Cathedral there was bright sunshine with mediocre warmth that allowed us to relax briefly from the cold. We tried to visit the old museum but it was closed without explanation.

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We tried instead the Pergamon museum but it closed as we were arriving. By then we were distracted by the need to find a toilet so we passed the nice old buildings, focused on finding a toilet.

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We walked and walked and tried a few places but none had toilets. Finally after more than 40 minutes we found a Starbucks. What a relief for all 4 of us!

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We walked into the Christmas markets WeihnachtsZauber at the Gendarmenmarkt. It was still light when we arrived but soon the sun set and the magic of high latitudes in winter was evident. Berlin has lotsssss of tourists and it can get a bit squeezie and there are a lot of languages other than German being spoken. That’s quite different to our experiences in Norway and Poland where the majority of the people at the Christmas markets were natives.

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We wandered around admiring the work of skilled artisans and sampled some tasty treats. My raclette cheese with potatoes and ham was divine!

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The glühwein was expensive and one had to buy the actual glass, so for the first time I went without.

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We were glad that the trust U-bahn took us straight home where we had some dinner together then rugged up and went outside to let off our fireworks. We had fun. It was my first time because my uncles handled the fireworks when I was a child. Since then fireworks have been banned from private use in Australia. Here in Germany fireworks are cheap, readily available and very popular. Right now it sounds like a war zone!

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This entry was posted on January 1, 2016 by in Europe and tagged , , , , , .
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