March 27th, 2018 to April 5th, 2018
March 27th, 2018.
A lot's happened over the last 10 days, including Easter which has two public holidays in Germany (Good Friday and Easter Monday). Even holy Ireland doesn't have Good Friday as a public holiday.
I was at the Berlinische Galerie and the most outstanding exhibition was Eduardo Paolozzi who’s work included illustrations, paintings, collages and sculptures all with strong bold colours and shapes.
March 30th, 2018
Good Friday morning and most people here in Berlin are in bed as it's a public holiday.
March 31, 2018
Full moon over Friedrichshain on Easter Sunday.
April 1st, 2018.
Waiting for the night tram on WarshauerStraße on the way to Friedrichshain cinema which shows films with the original language (mostly English) and German subtitles.
I went to Black Panther which is another movie based on Marvel's superhero comic book source. Its the first film I’ve seen with an all-black cast with a token white actor - interesting reversal. It’s based in a fictitious country in Africa and the story line has a mix of African culture and space age technology.
April 2nd, 2018.
Girl making giant bubbles at Hackescher Markt.
April 3rd, 2018.
Now that the weather has improved here in Berlin, I bought a second-hand bike in a bike shop in Prenzlauer Berg for €200. The guy in the shop said he’d buy it back again in 4 months time when I’m leaving.It’s kind of an old-fashioned bike but well maintained and there are so many old bikes here so it doesn’t look out of place. It’s perfect for what I need, to cycle around town.
It’s about a 20-minute cycle from my apartment in Friedrichshain to the cafes on Tor straße and Bernauer straße where I go to the writers’ meet-ups. And of course, as I cycle around I can stop and take photos of interesting buildings, like this church on Denziger straße, and the building on Peterburger Platz. I passed both these buildings many times on the tram but I never got photos until today when I was cycling.
I did some writing today in Milch & Zucker Cafe which is a co-working cafe where lots of people bring their laptops buy coffee and food, and work there for a few hours. It's got lots of power outlets and fast Wifi, perfect for mobile workers.
April 4th, 2018
Today I after the writers’ meet-up I cycled down to Friedrichstraße to go to Dussmann which is by far the best bookshop in Berlin.
It’s not only the three floors of books, music, films and the two floors of the English bookshop contained inside, it’s the views of the atrium, and the comfortable leather window seats allowing you to read a book glancing occasionally out the window across the street at beautiful buildings or looking at the view down Friedrichstraße with the busy street and trams and the S-Bahn beyond, but inside is the quietness of a library.
And on the way out there were two accordion players playing Vivaldi and I was surprised how versatile the accordions were.
April 5th, 2018.
Jugglers at the traffic lights at Alexanderplatz. When the lights turn red they juggle for a minute and then hope to get tips from drivers. They didn’t make much money but it was fun to watch especially when their skittles were still in the air when the lights turned to green.
It's a little over 4 weeks since I arrived in Berlin for this year's writing trip and I've written about 52000 words (about 210 pages) of the first draft of the new novel so I expect I'll get the first draft finished around the end of April or early May. I find the only way to make good progress is to write every day and make sure I write at least 1500 words (6 pages) before I do anything else. Once that's done, I'm free to research, or draw or take some photos or read or visit a gallery or cycle around the city and meet my friends. It's a great city and so easy to live here.