Nov 11, 2009


Where it stood we stand

Here are a few shots from the official Mauerfall celebration. It was a huge circus with tons of people, most of which weren't speaking German. It was also terrible terrible weather. I got these few shots before it really started pouring and we decided to spend the rest of the evening sitting comfortably inside a restuarant that was overlooking the dominoes. There were lots of speeches, lots of horribly cheesy music, but the domino thing did look pretty cool once they finally fell. I had intended to go to Bornholmerstrasse earlier in the day as well, but after I got nearly there I realized I had forgotten my memory cards and had to go home. Typical me. I think its great that they made such a big deal out of this anniversary - not just on November 9 but this whole past year. Anything that draws attention to the amazing city of Berlin and gets people visiting here I think is a good thing.

I say all the time how much I love Berlin and think its the best city in the world - and people always want me to explain why that is and I find I have a hard time putting into words what makes this city so special. Its just so lively, so accepting, so embracing of art, so open and free. Its inexpensive to live here so the people here are all (for the most part) real, normal, working people from literally all over the world. I love being surrounded by so much history and seeing how they rebuilt this city from rubble over the course of the past 60 years. I love the bike paths that make traveling on bicycle so easy, I love that harmless drugs have been decriminalized, that the city is full of parks, street art, art galleries and independent designers. I love all the second hand stores, flea markets, and farmers markets that go year round. I love the clean and cheap public transportation that makes having a car unnecessary and keeps the streets free from the congestion so many other cities are stricken with. I could go on and on.

Really, you should just come to Berlin and see for yourself :)


  1. thanks for sharing your pictures. Every time i see pictures of my "home", i start missing it more than i already do. However, i very much disagree with you that living in Berlin is inexpensive... When i left Berlin 15 years ago, life already had quite the price tag there, especially after the wall came down. Cost of living went through the roof. Making Berlin to what it is today added a huge cost to the people. Every time i go back home, i am amazed of how much higher the taxes are, how much more expensive the food has gotten and how sad the people look in Berlin with their daily lives. Berlin has always been a liberal city with people from all over the world.. mixing in their cultures with ours and art has always found its home in Berlin. Why is Berlin such a great city? to me, it also is one of the greatest cities in the world. I have all of my family and tons of friends still in Berlin. Despite the social situation of the people, the spirit (and acceptance) of the city is taking you on a ride... The hundreds of years old history alone can take hold of you...mix that with a little sunshine, good food and man... i miss it!! I just don't miss the government and the huge taxes and other expenses :-(

  2. I guess its all relative...while Germany does have significant taxes, the cost of living - ie, rents/mortgages, food, transportation etc is significantly lower than any other major city in Europe, let alone places like NYC and San Francisco. I moved here from Seattle and we are able to live on one salary here, whereas in Seattle that was impossible. I am sure the cost of living is higher than it was 15 years ago but compared to London, Paris, Rome,Moscow and other major cities in Germany it is downright cheap.

    As for people looking sad, I have to say especially in the winter Berlin has kind of gotten a reputation for people's sour faces :) Its kind of funny to me, because during the spring and summer its like a completely different city. Like the mayor said, Berlin is "poor but sexy".

    I think increased tourism in the city will definitely help those who are poor also, as the service industry is one of the main sources of employment in Berlin.

    But yeah, I don't really like the taxes either :)

  3. I love open markets, and many of the things you mentioned that make Berlin fun to live in. I've always heard great things about their museums as well. Someday maybe I will get there...
    I wanted to watch the dominoes fall on the news but didn't get to. Maybe I will google it. Cool effect.
    Thanks for the link again...

  4. great to see such beautiful images .... I hope to get a few like these too. :-)