The Berlin Diaries – Neverland

 

I’m unemployed, and have been for almost a month now. That’s not to say I don’t have an income – I’ve been doing bits and bobs of freelance work, and have been pitching articles and short stories for publication. It’s going surprisingly well so far. It feels nice. It feels amazing. I’m living life on my own terms – making money for myself, no boss, no rules. I’m carving out an existence the way I want to, not the way my bank account dictates. Maybe you could do that anywhere, maybe not. Berlin treats skint artists and musicians and literary types very kindly. It’s built by them and for them. Continue reading

The Berlin Diaries – Eye Contact Forever

There’s always something going on here. Every day, it’s a simple matter of having a quick peek on Facebook or wherever, and lo, hundreds of events. Gigs, poetry slams, open mic nights, comedy, raves, free parties, art exhibits, light shows, performance art, you name it. Never a dull moment.

On Saturday, an old friend from Come Backpackers messaged me. It was Dave, the long haired English guy who is furious about Brexit. The guy I kind of accidentally smoked hash with in a park on a rainy Tuesday afternoon. Dave sent me a link to an event happening that evening. I looked on the website and found that it was an eye contact experiment – one of the world’s largest, or something. I watched a video of one previous exhibition. Strangers in the street simply sat opposite one another and stared unspeaking into each other’s eyes. Seemed suitably weird for my evening’s entertainment. I went along. Continue reading

Donald Trump and Violence

Seven days until the fate of the world is decided, and I feel sick.

Latest polls show that Donald Trump is behind by a mere three points and counting. I wanted to write about Berlin and the fun things I’ve been doing, but I absolutely cannot think of anything else right now. The thought that I live in a world where such an utterly, blindingly, hair-rippingly obviously evil man is inches from being elected head of the world is absolutely terrifying me, and makes me so angry I barely know how to express it. Continue reading

Keep On Moving Through The Strange

When I’m travelling, I get hit by culture shock pretty regularly, pretty hard. It’s just a fact of the life I aspire to lead, and I’m resigned to simply riding out the vertigo that seeps in when I’m first treading the concrete of a big new city. There are certain things I do when I feel overwhelmed to keep myself grounded. A familiar meal or foodstuff usually helps. Chocolate. Pizza. Normal, everyday food. Also beer. Alcohol is extremely good at conjuring a false sense of belonging. I also find music is hugely powerful when it comes to giving the strength to keep plodding on; to delve further into The Strangeness. Continue reading

The Berlin Diaries – Three Weeks In

I Googled ‘The Berlin Diaires’ yesterday afternoon, trying to find my own blog, and it turns out The Berlin Diaries is also the name of a harrowing account of Second World War Germany, which makes my own Berlin Diaries seem rather unimportant and petty in comparison. So I’ve decided to cease writing it.

Nah just kidding let’s carry on talking about all the weird shit I’ve seen. Continue reading

The Berlin Diaries – 16th October

So, after collapsing onto the sofa at 8.30am with Tommy and Tianna, I was absofuckinglutely out of it for the next few hours. It was the first time I’d been to sleep since I woke up two days before on Friday morning. At 11am, I was prodded awake by the guy on reception at the hostel. The reception desk is in plain view of the sofas, and he’d been watching us snore for almost three hours. Continue reading

The Berlin Diaries – 15th October

Today was awful. Just, awful. I lay on the sofa half-drunk for most of the day, groaning quietly, unable to sleep on the uncomfortable chairs. People came and went into the hostel, happy and healthy, going about their days, and I was just strewn across the room like a plaster floating near the drain of a public swimming pool. Alcohol can fuck you up. Drugs can make you a mess. But lack of sleep dissolves the very fabric of the universe around you and renders you a manky, gibbering globule. Continue reading