that time i went to europe and became a jelly donut, berlin;

IMG_6529IMG_6519IMG_5860IMG_5815

{berlin: weihnachtsmarkt [christmas market, alexanderplatz],  siegessäule, smiling through the sickness @ brandenburger tor in my toadstool hat, the aforementioned currywurst restaurant}

*and then i sort of kind of made it to berlin, exceeeeeept the whole part where the next flight to berlin would have been four days later, as in the day after i hypothetically left berlin and that was uh, not cool.

*so onwards julie and i flew to hamburg to then take a train to berlin. didn’t really get to experience too much of hamburg, except their exemplary sandwich and kinder chocolate options in the hauptbahnhof {main train station}, which was much appreciated by julie and i. danke, hamburg. just to keep track, my kidneys have been replaced by aer lingus cookies and kinder surprise eggs.

*and then ich bin ein berliner, ya know? which can i pull out my soapbox to say, doesn’t quite mean you’re a jelly donut. so to everyone who has ever heil’d me or told me i was a jelly donut because i’ve been learning german for an inordinate amount of time, jfk was not saying he was a jelly donut, but i would not be adverse to having a jfk-shaped jelly donut, tbh. dreamy on dreamy wrapped in dreamy.

*after what seemed like a jillion hours of me playing german duolingo on the train {omg so efficient and clean and i am obsessed with german trains now i’m gonna sublet a seat on a german train one day follow my pinterest board “berlin train car dream home” plzzzz}, we got to the berlin hauptbahnhof. julie and i walked from the hauptbahnhof to her airbnb and my hostel in alexanderplatz {i stayed in this hostel which i really dug + recommend because it was all kinds of social} because that seemed like a good idea but was actually marginally good at best, because i was all “oh i don’t need a map i’ll just see the tv tower in the distance, and just KNOW!” where i then proceeded to get lost as soon as julie and i parted ways.

*we were going to meet up later to go to a disko {which was the subject of 80% of my german homework questions and thus was my dream come true; all i needed now was a guy named heiko and someone to talk to me about the lack of german closets and i could then mighty-morph into david hasselhoff}

*modern technology and travel in a foreign country do not mix well, so i ended up doing my second dream which was CURRYWURST, which is a mixture of regular hotdogs, curry powder, and ketchup combined with the pure admiration of my 8 year old self who used to eat cold hot dogs as a snack, along with dipping my finger into tubs of cream cheese. we do not need any further proof that i was a chubby child. my bloodstream circa 1998 was essentially oreo o’s cereal platelets floating down a sea of sunkist soda blood.

*currywurst is totally allowed to be its own bullet point. so here it is, being its own bullet point.

*especially at a place in alexanderplatz {uber touristy} that exclusively techno-ized whitney houston’s entire discography. which means, it was my third dream come true. hot dogs and curry powder and fries and whitney, all perfection. i am now doing the social media marketing for that restaurant, fyi.

*american moment #1: was me eating a delicious mystery of this white stuff in a packet called “salad cream” and being all “omg we muuuuust have this in the states! i am being so worldly and adventurous for eating such a mysterious, exotic delicacy all on my own!!” only to slowly realize i was eating an absurd amount of good ol’ fashion mayonnaise. on a vat of french fries, no less.

  IMG_5849 IMG_6534IMG_6532 IMG_6424

{swing sets by the berlin wall, mauerpark flea market, and another weihnachtsmarkt! [potsdamer platz] i was swimming in weihnachtsmarkts, ya’ll, alte nationalgalerie}

*precautionary flu shot be damned, i got upwards of 6 strains of the flu for the next four days, didn’t sleep a wink the entirety of my time in berlin, and hobbled around town in various stages of decrepitude.

*being that i was surviving on rations of elderberry ricolas, thick german grocery store bread and individual packets of peanut butter, i was not feeling too hot. but i was saving soooooo many euro-euro bills, ya’ll.

*my main hobby was walking to the pergamon museum , seeing the ridiculous line, going “aw hell no”, wondering what castle i wanted to pay 12 euro to see that day and then not paying 12 euro to see that castle, then sneaking on the metro without paying for that ish ’cause their metro payment scheme is on the HONOR SYSTEM.

*meaning you buy the ticket ahead of time, walk past the exactly ZERO TURNSTILES and are supposed to “validate” your ticket by scanning it prior to using it, and then walk on the train all hunky-dory. i was so stunned at this system and assumed i’d figure it out at the next station, so…. i hopped on the train and just…..kept on not paying for trains. es tut mir leid, berlin infrastructure. i am planning on righting this wrong by buying a ton of stock in haribo goldbaeren and church spires.

*seeing as i had no honor and no immune system, i had a pretty cheap time in berlin. i will tell you, i’m super glad i couldn’t eat anything in berlin and was uber sneaky on the metro because well, i wanted to vomit the whole time, thus this {foreshadowing} allowed me to be able to eat in munich + prague when homegirl over here was gosh-darn near ravenous and scraping at the bottom of her crusty coin purse of euros. danke, berlin!

IMG_6422 IMG_5867 IMG_5895

{bridge on the way to the museumsinsel [museum island], quaint houses outside, and inside of sachenhausen concentration camp}

*on one of these gross sick days i fortuitously charged my phone in my hostel lobby. while charging my phone, i met an awesome guy named jossef from guatemala who was going to squat on the hostel couches in between a layover to brussels that night. after quickly texting some friends “hey, am i about to be kidnapped?” jossef and i went to go get some pizza where he introduced me to the delicious dark magic which is putting tuna fish on a pizza.

*lucky for me, jossef was the king of all informal tour guides and thankfully not a kid/woman-napper. we pranced around to checkpoint charlie and potsdamer platz, where i somehow found myself {quasi-drunkenly} challenging germans to races up a movie theater escalator {that was in the process of going down, but that goes without saying}. i give you, american moment #2.

*this is an odd fact of myself when i am sick. when i’m well, i am a lazy mess, but when i am sick i somehow want to do the most active things and nearly put myself in the hospital. this was no exception. we almost went swing dancing, but i decided against my worst judgment and we went back to the hostel after i beat a german dad at escalator racing.

*next i went to the flohmarkt im mauerpark {flea market in the berlin wall park} and attempted to speak as much german as possible, which was met with: people speaking back to me in english and one woman asking me {in german} if i was french and would i like her to speak to me in my assumed native tongue of french. i took the second response as a win, overall. i bought an old yellow hat to commemorate the moment. it makes me look like a toadstool, as if i am the type of girl whose mom picked out her outfits ’til she was 16 and brought canned vienna sausages to school for lunch. it is my spirit hat and i will never, ever feel silly for wearing it.

*then i made my way to sachsenhausen concentration camp, a hike of a walk from the town of oranienburg. which, obviously, was majorly sad and surreal and i will never be able to erase it from my brain, and is precisely the point. the most peculiar part about visiting the concentrations camp, is it wasn’t even like it was off on their own, secluded from the town of oranienburg. no, not even a little. these camps were completely nestled closely in these residential areas. there’s a bus to these camps from the train station, but i chose to walk instead {ummmm, also because i would not be able to sneak on, to be honest}, which i’m glad i did, because the whole experience was just so unbelievable when you consider that there are adorable, quaint houses on the same street as the camps. completely bonkers and without a doubt the most impactful part of my trip. {end introspection here.}

*i kept imagining myself giving hypothetical directions for friends coming to my hypothetical german dinner party at my hypothetical oranienburg house: “oh yes, take two rights after the third light and gas showers…if you’ve gotten to the leveled concentration camp barracks, you’ve gone too far.”  

*speaking of going too far….

IMG_5928 IMG_6423IMG_6163 IMG_6421

{berlin cathedral, nikolaikirche [st. nicholas’ church], me and my brazilian hostel posse pre-mayhem}

*seeing as i was a total loner, i was starved for social interactions not including me trying to feebly order {in german} bags of ricola at the nearest apotheke: “mehr ricola, bitte?!” . i luckily was rooming with a whole group of brazilian students who i possibly, most likely, definitely forced myself into their friendship group as abrasively american as possible. i’m sort of that person who walks up to a large group of people having a conversation and says “hey guys what are we talking about?!!!” i am that turd.

*so me and my new brazilian hostel posse agreed to do wild n’ crazy berlin new years eve hijinx, and seeing as our hostel doubled as a bumpin’ neighborhood bar, this was seamlessly easy to do. meanwhile, strange norwegian guys kept scamming on me, trying to get us to go to diskotheks, telling me i should try snuff, and then trying to impress me by making me listen to “what does the fox say?” as that has been, to them, norway’s most significant contribution to the world. luckily i turned them off completely by asking them about gnome folklore, so peace and tranquility were restored quickly and swiftly.

*in a nutshell: water bottles full of mysterious liquids, vomiting on the berlin metro, lamp posts being climbed like spider monkeys, glass bottles being thrown into a pit of people for an hour, and losing one of our own to the treacherous crowd of peeing berliners near brandenburg gate, we finally got everyone together at the hostel safe and sound around 4 in the morning. oh yah, and the mob of strange men following me and my brazilian lady friends on to the metro? thrilling! let’s say i got a year’s worth of adrenaline in about a night. currently wearing a “i survived new years eve in berlin and all i got was this lame t-shirt and possibly ptsd” as i type this.

*this trip was full of many of my finest moments, one of which is me thinking it was a great idea to book a 7am train to prague on new year’s day, figuring “well, i’ll be up anyways!?!” why yes, i was “up anyways” because i had been “up anyways” since december 26th.

*as my brazilian posse headed to bed, i sat in the hostel bar with my phone and charger to wait for my train so i wouldn’t fall asleep super hard in my own vomit. about 15 minutes passed with me seeming like a loner sociopath sans trench coat, until luckily a huge group of irish lads sat down at my table and agreed to talk to me + keep me up until my train left. much craic was had, and i realized american moment #3 was me needing one of the irish guys to translate whatever his other irish friend was saying because i.couldn’t.understand.him.at.all. the guys also offered me my pick of ireland’s finest couches to sleep on while i was in dublin on my 13 hour overnight layover for my return flight back to the states. wahoo, american charm!

**next stop, prague!**

Advertisements

One thought on “that time i went to europe and became a jelly donut, berlin;

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: