Monday, 30 May 2011

I know you've seen them before, but...

I don't think you've seen them on a billboard!

As sad as it may seem I think seeing Orla and Hamish not only (a) on a giant billboard, but (b) not arguing, pushing, or crying and (c) without a dummy in either mouth, is one of the happiest moments of my whole May!

We knew some of the events for the 125th Anniversary of the Ku'Damm had already started and we'd missed them, but we decided to make our way down there yesterday afternoon and see if anything was happening. So we went to a vintage car display - is that what you'd call it? All the cars were parked at jaunty angles on the road, interspersed with Berliner Kindl stands and food stalls. It seems to really amuse Stevie that as soon as a bit of road or whatever is closed off for some reason, within 10 minutes there'll be a beer stand with 8 tables and 16 benches there ready for business.

The kids really enjoyed it. Hamish was in his element as there were lots of things with trailers, including a bus with a trailing bus behind it, and a fire engine with a big trailing fire engine thing. If I didn't have kids I would have had the time to patiently read the little German signs in the windscreens and tell you what these things were, but instead I drank the expensive beer all the time hoping it would help me drown out the incessant calls for ice cream, pretzels, sausages, sweeties, etc, etc. We even saw Herbie from the films. Hamish even climbed the front grill before I realised and plucked him off.

We had quite a nice afternoon just wandering around with me clicking away like a paparazzi as usual mumbling (to myself probably, cause Stevie wouldn't be interested) 'what a lovely curve that has', and 'ooh I love that font', and 'isn't that the most gorgeous grey you've seen (apart from me and my sister)?' I think it's a bit of a shame that the anniversary of the Ku'Damm isn't getting such a great write up. It seems to be that the English language news here think that it's desperately uncool and well the attitude is that the Ku'Damm may as well just be forgotten for what was once the Champs Elysees of Berlin is now just a sad, jaded run of the mill street with a plethora of international chain stores and a bunch of high-end designer boutiques.

I tend to think these things are written by people living in the east. Young, hip people who think the city barely functions beyond the east where life is cool, grafitti-covered, trendy, cutting edge, blah, blah, blah. And it is great on the east, but the west also has it's charms. Or maybe I just feel a lot of affection for the place now. But there always seems to be something happening here and I like that.

I spoke to my friend Claire who moved back to Derby at Christmas last night. They're glad to be back, but they do miss Berlin and the amount going on. She said that their friends are amazed by how much they did and saw while they were here, and that's the thing, it's not hard. I guess it's like this in most capital cities, and I do wonder if we as a family are even becoming complacent about it. The kids are now so used to seeing wild animals in the zoo I think it would be a shock if we didn't have lions and giraffes at the end of our road in Derby.

So anyway, yesterday we also went into the Mini photo booth and got the kids photo taken for the competition to win a Mini. There photo also appeared on the giant electronic billboard above C&A, and luckily I had enough time to get over there and take photos of it. Now I just need to win the off-road Clubman to expand my German adventures with the kids (and copious amounts of luggage).

1 comment:

  1. There are a number of things I could comment on here, such as how brilliant that is your kids got on a billboard and how very cute they look on it and how I also like how good the Germans are at putting beer (and sausage) stalls out as well and how I also would have appreciated the old cars and how I had to google Ku'Damm, but... YOU SAW HERBIE???


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