Potsdamer Platz generally freaks me out for some reason. Probably because it’s a piece of Berlin that really doesn’t feel like Berlin (at least to me and that’s coming from an auslander). But, I have to admit I love their holiday decorations.
December 1, 2013
Sunday morning, waking up to the smell of cigarette smoke in my hair.
The ghost of whiskey’s past, present in my mouth. I can taste it, bitter and lingering.
Tossing and turning. Gimme water. Gimme food. Gimme shelter.
Sleeping til’ the sun bows to the night, listening to the cars outside, accelerating, the trams sliding along tracks, dogs barking.
Head pounding. Cold pizza, warm tea, soft sheets, long kisses, burrowing into the bed pretending it’s a cave. An early hibernation for Winter.
November 30, 2013
I woke up at 745 to watch the sunrise. The sun came up almost suddenly and stained the horizon with a flash of color. Orange, pink and purply blue.
The fog that once blanketed the barn and fields started receding to the West slowly, sorta dissolving into the lake at the edge of the property.
A group of small deer crept out into the field closest to the largest window in the front room of the barn. They feasted on knee high grass and timidly moved forward away from the cover of the trees they must have been hiding in over night.
The sun burned through the clouds defiantly and the day was illuminated and set on fire with a strange haze.
Everything was quiet. Even the wind whispered.
"You can’t go home again because home has ceased to exist except in the mothballs of memory"
In Furstenwerder feeling dark inside and out.
I finished “Travels with Charley” by John Steinbeck and for some reason it made me long for America.
I feel kinda homesick for something that I don’t even know if I “know” anymore.
We walked to this lake by our cabin/barn, mud up to our shins. The wind was wild and whipping the water in a sorta show of dominance. I thought it was pretty anyways.
November 29, 2013 - Furstenberg, Germany
Wow. Today we awoke to a landscape blinking sleepily, yawning and coming alive with the rising sun.
We arrived the night before and everything that surrounded us was dark, black and a kinda mystery, but today everything shined.
Huge, endless, emerald green fields. Blue lakes surrounding us on all sides and hills upon hills dotted with tiny forests of leafless trees.
The cabin we are staying at is actually a converted barn on a property with a few other reclaimed and up-cycled houses (all converted from old bits and pieces of a farm that once stood there). A stable made into apartments, an old dry cellar made into a small cottage.
The sky was blue and all you could hear out there was the sound of wind whipping around the winter bare trees. The wind danced around the willowy grass and through the fields, then smacked the side of our barn hard, howling a little. Lamenting upon the fact that maybe it would rather be inside with us enjoying the fire.
Karl cooked pancakes with white chocolate and I sat drinking strong coffee on the ginormous tan couch stretched out in front of the fire.
November 28, 2013 - Furstenberg, Germany
We are finally at the cabin. Silence like I haven’t heard in such a long time. We slept like babies on the couch in front of the fire.
Heartbeats thumping soft.
Pine wood ceilings, soft bed.
Deep tub, crackling fire.
Crystal wrapped around light fixtures. Quiet. Open.
We sat drinking beer in front of the fire. I finished mine, wrapped my arms around Karl and laid across his chest.
I could hear his heart thumping softly. Calmly. Sorta in tune with the clock ticking on the wall. I fell asleep fast and easy, melting into his chest.
He told me he joined soon after and we awoke in the dark, the fire had gone out.
Pine wood panels cross stitched across the ceiling. You could keep yourself entertained looking at the details in the wood grain.
Illustration by Maggie Tang
November 27, 2013
Karl woke me up with a walrus kiss this morning & I slept til’ noon. I had never slept better in my life. Drunk dreaming, tangled up in sheets, bundled. Cosy in our new “penthouse” 5 stories above Berlin.
Off to our cabin in the woods we go. Solitude awaiting us at the end of a train ride. Close enough to touch.
Illustration by Maggie Tang
November 26th, 2013
Rushing, rushing, rushing.
I’m moving into a new flat today & packing for a trip to a cabin in the woods for three days of solitude with Karl (sans Internets). I will be bringing a pen & paper with me to write about the week away in the woods & post retrospectively over the weekend.
But, enough about that! More about this video. I am all for dream warrior women and Michelle Stelien is a beast. She rips just as hard or harder than any skateboarder I’ve seen & she does it all without padding.
I want to be her. Watch the video, maybe get inspired and I’ll see you in a few days with hopefully a few more words!
Our disrespect for thinking: someone sitting in a chair, gazing out of a window blankly, always described as ‘doing nothing’.Alain de Botton
November 25th, 2013
I woke up to the smell of coffee and a bright, sunny, blue skied day in Berlin!
What more could you need?
I am hoping for more sun this Winter. In a few weeks Karl and I are heading to Austin, Texas for Christmas and then driving across the American Southwest to San Diego for New Years Eve. From there we will drive to San Francisco.
I am hoping (and dreaming of) long stretches of America abandoned and populated only by our caravan. A huge trailer and truck attached carrying 4 people and countless dogs through the desert (my mom, Abby & our dogs are coming as well).
I keep thinking of how quiet the nights are in the desert on the road. The cold permafrost that accumulates on the ground and hot breath you can see forming as you let out your dragons sigh. I can’t wait.
Seeing the stars as clear as crystal makes me kinda giddy. Getting away from the city makes me even more giddy. I am just giddy overall.
I can’t wait.
November 24th, 2013 - Berlin, Germany
This year has been crazy. That is the best way I can sum it up succinctly.
I got my dream job at my dream company. I traveled all around the world, including Chicago (3 times), Lisbon (2 times), all over Germany, Poland, Denmark and Sweden.
I worked my ass off - harder than I have ever worked in my life. And, I have been more tired than I’ve ever been in my life, too.
I met a girl. We exchanged pieces of our souls a bit. And, she went away.
I fell in love with a floppy haired man, and I learned a great number of swear words in Swedish.
It has been grand.
But, in the past year I’ve stopped writing. Something that is like therapy for me. I “write” every day. 75 or more emails — all hand crafted for the person I am writing to and by the end of the day the last thing I want to do is write about my life. I have lost the ability to really write. Not just words but feelings, senses, tastes & touches. I’ve lost the urge to explain the smells on the Ubahn or the soft skin on the back of the man snoring through his mustache next to me. I want to reclaim that.
And, that’s not good. It’s sad to admit that writing all day has stripped me of my creativity a bit, but it has. I need to fix that. So, I am going to write everyday. On scraps of paper if I have to, but I’m going to write.
I’m going to document my travels, I’m going to write about what I’m reading (because I’m going to read, too), I’m going to write about places I visit and the people I see, but it does’t really matter because writing is enough for me - I could write about the shitty coffee I drank earlier at the American Diner in Prenzlauerberg and how it reminded me of home. I could write about anything and it would be okay.
So thus begins my 365 write everyday project.
"I grew up on a rice farm in Guyana. We didn’t have running water or electricity, or anything like that. I didn’t come to America until I was 14. My friend has been struggling lately because she can’t get a job she wants, even though she’s really talented. She’s lived in New York her whole life and hasn’t travelled very much, and she said to me: ‘I don’t understand why anyone would want to immigrate to America.’ I told her:
“Trust me— if there’s a heaven, this is it.’”