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Why I Love Berlin

Rob and I spent this weekend in Berlin celebrating his mother’s 50th birthday and enjoying our birthday gift from his family (Blue Man Group tickets), and every time we’re here, I’m reminded why I love it so much. I had never been before last August after my interview, but I had always wanted to go. That desire intensified when I met and subsequently fell in love with Rob. He grew up here and absolutely loves this city. Now I know why.

5 Reasons I Love Berlin

  1. It’s where my husband grew up. Unlike most people in my life that I am close to, I couldn’t truly understand everything about my husband because I had never seen his hometown. I didn’t know what place, which people, and which experiences shaped his life because I had never been to his school, his childhood home, his first work place. I had never seen the places he talked about so often. Now that I’ve spent a lot of time here, I understand him much better; I know where he’s coming from.
  2. The city, or “das dickes B”, has a great personality. Despite growing up in a small town (what? Neosho is on Wikipedia?), I am a big-city girl. I kinda grew up in Kansas City because we lived there for about 5 years when I was little, so I think that’s why I like big cities so much. I love the way people walk down big city streets. I love the architecture. I love the business and importance. But Berlin has something special. It is home to so much amazing history, and that adds to its personality. I think one of the most influential aspects of Berlin’s history was The Wall. The people who live in this big city used to live in this big cities. From August 13, 1961 until November 9, 1989, Berlin was two cities. Many people stil talk about this time, and in fact, my husband and his family were “Ossies” (the best English translation might be “Easties”).
  3. I love Hasir’s and Konnopke. Hasir’s, in Kreuzberg, is famous for its delicious Döner-Kebab. It was the first place Rob and I went in Berlin the first time we went together. Yum. Konnopke’s Imbiss is an East German staple if you want currywurst. It’s right under the U-2 between the Schönhauser Allee and Eberswalderstraße stops. Lecker!
  4. I love public transportation. I know, it’s kind of a weird thing to say, but I can get around in Berlin on my own using the awesome train and bus system. If I can manage Berlin, I can manage any big city. And that feels good.
  5. I could live here. That’s a standard by which I have started judging cities recently. I could live in Liverpool but not London, or in Washington D.C. but not Richmond. If I feel a connection with the city, a familiarity very quickly, I feel like I could live there, and I could definitely live in Berlin.

Question of the Day

Which city have you spent a lot of time in, but never lived in, that has captured your heart?

8 thoughts on “Why I Love Berlin

  1. lifestudent

    03 Nov on 2008 at 20:14

    I’d love to go to Berlin, its on my top travel list – but with a baby now I fear that trip is quite a long way off. I love a lot of cities but dont know if I could live in them…

    For example, I love NYC and I love DC, but dont know if I could actually become a resident. But, each time I visit I feel a special connection and have a blast. Though I would still prefer to call Chicago home. Unlike you, I do think I could live in London. Love that city! Jeff had an opportunity to transfer there (twice) and passed on it, and I will forever hold a grudge against him for that.

    I do think I could move to Maui – its a state, but as big as a city. I love the whole island and all it has to offer and feel at peace when I am there. I always feel comfortable when I am there and never want to leave once I am there!

    • xgravity23

      09 Nov on 2008 at 16:49

      @lifestudent – You’ve GOT to visit Berlins sometime. It’s a wonderful city! I know we won’t actually live in those places, but that feeling, that special connection you refer, to makes me feel like I could live there.

      Wow! You’ve actually had the opportunity to live in London?! Cool! But you seem pretty happy to be Chicago. I mean, if you moved to London, could you manage missing Cubs games in favor of soccer games? London does have several really big teams…

  2. Lorraine

    03 Nov on 2008 at 17:27

    Dude, I could SO live in Berlin. I honestly think it’s my favorite city in the whole world. Have you checked out Berlin is Betterr? It’s a blog all about why you should live in Berlin.

  3. James M

    03 Nov on 2008 at 15:08

    We loved seeing Berlin with you two. It’s a great city, and I think we could live there too. Glad to hear you both had a good weekend there!

    • xgravity23

      09 Nov on 2008 at 16:49

      @James M – Oh, it was so fun! I hope we can do it again some day!

  4. ww

    03 Nov on 2008 at 4:19

    I completely agree with you that public transportation is awesome. I don’t know why, but I absolutely LOVE riding subways… ergo, any city with a subway system is okay by me!

    • xgravity23

      09 Nov on 2008 at 16:50

      @ww – I know… why is it always such an adventure??