Photo of ornate tearoom interior
Photo by Getrud K. via Flickr

Because I told Jörn I would.

It’s 4 a.m. here and a dream ripped me from my sleep. I’m crashing again on Seán’s couch after another evening’s movie marathon. This time, Atanarjuat, or Fast Runner, and, to lighten things considerably, Men in Black. I hadn’t seen Atanarjuat since its stunning debut. I won’t summarize—that’s what links are for—but I highly recommend it. Um, Seán might not, but he was watching with a filmmaker’s eye. As to MIB, well, I can quote much of the script. ’Nuff said there.

I am on my way to Frankfurt for the weekend to spend time with Thomas and Daniela. Besides looking forward to seeing them, I’m eager to be a bit of a tourist.


Well as I was saying to Jörn in an email, most travel breaks are so short that one feels compelled to just rush about. The thinking goes “I may never see this place again, so I must cram in as much as possible.” So it’s back-to-back museums, the restaurants of the guide books, canned tours on packed buses, and evening’s spent “recovering” from the day’s activities.

Frankly, it’s a passionate love affair. Heady and over much too soon.

I’ve tasted Berlin in small bites. A new neighborhood here, a new café there… And in good company.

On Tuesday evening, Jörn introduced me to the stunningly beautiful Tadschikische Teestube (“Tajik tearoom”) in Mitte. We met outside in the snow and dark and recovered from the cold with hot mugs of fruit- and anise-flavored tea in a room of wooden rafters, low tables, piled rugs and pillows. We missed the chance to sprawl on the floor (shoes off, bitte), so shared a quiet table and two choices from their Russian and Eastern European menu. We switched dishes at mid point. Mmm, warm lox with a horseradish dip.

Jörn’s been to the U.S.: two years in Boulder, Colorado and, lol, some months in our own Greenbelt. His comment on the blog (how did he get this out of me?) is that it’s been interesting reading of his home city through my foreign eyes. I would say the same of his take on the U.S.: from strip malls to the death penalty.

That whole religious conservatism thing we’ve got going on right now? Scary.

Oh, and Eric, he warned me away from Scooter…

Okay, I need to get back to sleep.

Süsse Träume, bitte!

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