After purchasing the Lomography City Guide Berlin on a whim, I suddenly found myself in love with the little world painted inside; and since I've had a hankering to go travelling for quite some time now, I got myself a passport, convinced my friend Sarah that she wanted to come with me, and made my little whimsical dream become a reality! Here's part two of our Berlin adventures!
DAY 2: We were up bright and early to continue our exploration. The city was very quiet in the weekend morning, but the fleamarket at Boxhagener Platz (#022) was already coming to life when we arrived. The little stalls were heaving with vintage home accessories, records, books, handmade necklaces, and quirky artwork whilst violinists and ventriloquists entertained the Sunday morning browsers.
We then headed back up to Warschauer Strasse to the RAW Complex (#018); a place to hang out, eat, and drink in an artistic and bohemian environment with fellow waifs, strays, and general eccentrics. We had lunch at Hektik Food in the RAW Complex; it was a double decker bus converted into a café. The owner was asleep in a boiler suit on one of the sofas, so one of his friends attempted to hold fort behind the stove, but she obviously didn’t have a clue what she was doing! We had a long wait for the food, but it was certainly eventful and she gave us some free delicious cube potatoes with mayo! First off we were befriended by a guy who couldn’t speak but he was friendly enough! He asked for some photos with us, taught us his special handshake, had a few cigarettes and was on his way. Our next guest was less friendly…wearing only a loin cloth and some giant pretzels tied round his neck, he started dancing and shouting angrily but we couldn’t understand him so we just avoided eye contact and carried on chatting. Next thing we knew he threw a glass bottle at Sarah’s head! Luckily he missed and when our food arrived shortly after, and the girl simply said “glad you’re still alive!" The food was very good though, a pita bread stuffed with roasted vegetables and cheese.
Fully refueled we headed for the Stasi Museum (239). It is located in the former headquarters and to this day, still has a rather eerie atmosphere to it. The first part of the museum was very informative and a real eye opener to just how much people were observed. Some of the cameras were incredibly advanced and concealed in ways that really highlight the intensity of Stasi’s gaze. The second part of the museum has left key areas of the HQ untouched so you can walk through and experience everything as it once was. Photo passes can be purchased for a euro. The museum is certainly a real eye opener.
On our way back, we decided to have our picture taken in one of the analogue photobooths (032). We didn’t realized that the machine took four photos without warning so in each one we looked very unprepared! They’re the coolest little souvenir though and super fun for creating little photo memories. We then tried to find the outdoor cinema at Volkspark (096) but it didn’t appear to be there so we had a stroll around the park and then walked to Alexanderplatz.
Alexanderplatz (135 + 136) is the best place to go for a cheap Bratwurst, which is super tasty and very authentic. Afterwards, we sat in the deckchairs with a beer and watched the rollerskaters. As we were leaving, a guy heard us speaking in English and introduced himself as Dom from Newcastle. He was traveling around Europe on his own so we decided to show what we’ve discovered so far. We took him to the beach bar, the photobooth, and Skatehalle and ended up staying out talking and drinking until the sun came up. It seems bars in Berlin stay open as long as there are still people there which is so cool!
Stay tuned for the next article in this 7-part series!