It's hard to believe that two months have passed since we arrived in Berlin. It flew by and now I feel like I have to play catch-up with this blog! My thesis seems to have taken all my writing juices lately, which is great, but here I am with two whole months to report on!
We basically loved Berlin. The vibe is very down-to-earth and the people are friendly and eclectic. The city is not exactly beautiful, per se, but has interesting neighbourhoods to explore, art, history, parks galore! I was especially impressed at the family-friendliness of the city. In our area, Prenzlauerberg, just about every person I saw was pregnant. One day P and I had a contest to see how many pregnant ladies on bikes we could count, and we reached 10 in less than 2 hours! There are parks on every corner, and there are amazing children`s playgrounds in them, with natural materials and interesting playthings. There is one specific park near our apartment that has 4 different playgrounds in it - each one for children of different ages and developmental stages! A schoolyard nearby has a completely 100% natural playground, with slides built into hills, lots of bushes and trees with natural tunnels and passageways through them, interesting boulders for climbing, and an area with different sized sticks for building and imagination! Ì was amazed with natural playgrounds before coming to Berlin, but now I`m obsessed! I really appreciated how nature is valued in German culture. From the strong presence of naturopathy (even within modern medical practices!), to the abundance of organic markets and products, the compost stations in apartment complexes, and bike lanes on every street, and especially the green spaces within the city! I really felt like it radiates a certain sense of well-being that other western countries just don`t have. Aaand I also must give a shout-out to the 2:00-5:00pm kaffee and kuchen time that just rocked my world. But for the other highlights of our short stint in Berlin, I`m going to do this bullet-point style: