GIRL ABOUT TOWN >> FRAU DER STADT!
OF LATE I’VE been everywhere but Manchester. My mind is definitely in escape mode even though I have to work, write and erm, find another job to fund the Girl About Town lifestyle.
So it’s always nice when your best mate from Berlin invites you over to stay for a few days! Alena and I have been through some interesting cirumstances in the jammy three years of academia, and there was certainly a point when I thought we would never be friends again. But hey, life’s too short for petty politics. Wolfing down fresh blueberries in a secret bamboo hedgerow in Schöneburg with friends and family is much more important.
1. Travelling on the excellent bahns, which zoom from the suburbs, watching the tall townhouses intermingle with some surprisingly eccentric, well-loved allotments and Berlin Zoo on the way to Tiergarten;
2. Realising that Selfridges is small fry compared to department store KaDeWe which had the Olympic stopwatches from the 1930s on display at the grand store’s entrance;
3. Sitting in the impossibly green Lustgarten with the sun beaming and with a, ahem, Starbucks. (They have different flavours there!)
4. Chilling at the massive cinema, The Sony Centre in Potsdamer Platz.
Of course the reminders of history are still ever-present amongst the grandeur of the Kaisers and lions: Checkpoint Charlie eerily blends in with the straße, and the broken steeple of the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gedächtniskirche stands staunchly surrounded by newbuilds and the busy platz.
However, the true beauty of Berlin is surely standing before Brandenburger Tor as the sun begins to set, before taking a stroll beside their house of parliament the Bundeskanzleramt, and the river. It was at that moment I understood why great architecture is so important to Alena.
EasyJet flights from Liverpool John Lennon to Berlin-Schoenefeld, Aug-Sep range from £27.99 to £82.99.
Carbon offsetting, £5.
Terravision coach from Sackville Street, Manchester, to Liverpool; £10 return.
Java Chocolate Chip Frappuccino, Starbucks Friedrichstraße 61, 10117 Berlin, approx 3 Euros.