On his finger Ramin Soleymani wears a small magnet. And this, he says, already makes him a cyborg. For “180 Seconds Berlin”, Theresa Authaler and Florian Falzeder accompany him in the S-Bahn across Berlin – from Alex to Potsdamer Platz – in his search for the invisible world of electromagnetism. Will he find it?
After an 11-month adventure in Berlin I’ve arrived safely in the United States. I’m trying my best to readjust to the American culture but part of my mind is still stuck back in Germany. I could probably write an entire book about my experiences abroad, and one day I just might, but for now I’ll have to keeps things short. On Tuesday morning four of my closest friends in Berlin were kind enough to accompany me to Tegel Airport and bid me farewell before my flight. The night before had been full of laughs and stories in our favorite brewery, where I enjoyed my final sip of fresh German pilsner for the year. The morning after had a slightly different tone though. I was thrilled to have my friends by my side until the very end but there was a bittersweet feeling to everything.
This is a preview of One Year in Berlin: Returning to the United States.
As my time in Berlin slowly creeps to a close one of the thoughts that’s constantly been on my mind is the impending “reverse culture shock” that so many travelers have warned me about. I may have spent 20 years of my life in the US, but I have a feeling that a year in Germany has done away with many of my American habits and rituals.
This is a preview of One Year in Berlin: How German Unis Work.
For decades the first of May has been known as an International Worker’s Day all over the globe. In many countries, such as Germany, it’s a federal holiday during which demonstrations (usually peaceful) are held in support of the labor movement.
However, May 1st (known in Germany as “Erster Mai”) holds a somewhat special significance in Berlin. Since the late 80s extreme left organizations have organized protests in districts of the city such as Kreuzberg during which riots have unfortunately broken out, leading to violence and police intervention. In more recent history extreme right groups have also proven to become hostile in the streets of the capital city. The violence has thankfully declined in the past few years, but we were nevertheless all warned by our program director to be wary in certain neighborhoods.
This is a preview of One Year in Berlin: Being in Germany on May 1 and Games in the Park.
It’s commonly said that there is a difference between Berlin and Germany. Sure, German is spoken here, German food is eaten here, and the German government convenes here, but the experience one receives in Berlin is generally thought to be incomparable with most other German cities. I experienced that firsthand back in Autumn when the BCGS group traveled to München. Everything seemed more conservative and slowed-down. That proved to be a great trip, but at the same time, the amount of museum visits and excursions on our itinerary gave it a bit of a hectic and touristy feel. This past weekend however, I had the opportunity to head north to the small town of Fliegenfelde, located just outside of Lübeck, where I was able to enjoy a radical change of pace from the sometimes stressful Berlin atmosphere.
This is a preview of One Year in Berlin: A Trip to Lübeck.
It’s certainly no secret that Berlin has arguably the biggest club scene in the world. Ever since the wall, fell clubs of all shapes and sizes have popped up throughout neighborhoods such as Friedrichshain and Kreuzberg. DJs and music enthusiasts flock here from all corners of the globe for a chance to take part in the Berlin nightlife. What many visitors don’t know is that the city has also managed to cultivate a fairly large opera scene. I enjoy the electronic music of a loud, underground club as much as the next guy, but some days I prefer to sample Mozart, Puccini, and Verdi.
This is a preview of One Year in Berlin: The Capital City of Opera.