2017 has been a year so crazy and full that it’s incredibly difficult to summarise it in a few words or sentences. It wasn’t one coherent story, it was more like hundred wild stories without any structure or logic. It has been a loud, overwhelming whirlwind of so many feelings, ups and downs, tears, kisses and personal growth. It was by no means an easy year but why should it. Looking back now, it feels a little as if I’ve constantly been on a journey, never quite sure what I was actually searching for and then slowly realising that there is no quick fix for the big questions. So I guess that means I’ll be carrying those over into 2018.
I’m sitting outside a bar in Stavanger, Norway right now, the sun is shining on my face and on the pink, blue and orange houses across the street. A delicious craft beer is fuelling my creativity (such a cliché travel blogger moment) and boy, apparently it has been three months since I last said hi on here. Wait, what? Yeah, and I absolutely can’t promise it won’t happen again. Somebody evidently took a bit of a break from blogging and tried to get out of their Berlin media bubble. I stayed offline whenever work allowed me to (thanks work!), went on tons of crazy adventures that could and perhaps will one day fill entire books. Of course I never stayed off Instagram for that long. So, here’s a long overdue selection of snaps from November until April.
2016 is currently getting a hard time and guess what, I’m also very relieved it’s over soon! But while looking through photos of this year as I always do in December, I was surprised by how many happy memories there were. It’s easy to join in with everybody’s 2016-bashing but a lot in life is what you make of it (even if you don’t feel like it), so I’m very determined to use that little change of seasons for planning a few long-overdue, new beginnings.
I’m travelling to Curacao and Japan this month (eeeeek!) and also find myself (and about five different notebooks) in the middle of two very exciting and intense projects, so my mind has already forgotten about anything that happened between August and September. Luckily dat ol’ iPhone’s photo roll hasn’t. Here are a couple of snaps from Austria (Alps), Bavaria, Austria again (Carinthia), England and mild summer days in Berlin. Also, I’d actually like to show you extracts from David Foster Wallace’s speech “This is Water” which has inspired me in so many ways recently. Here is the full piece.
Summer’s still not over in Berlin but as the days get shorter and everyone’s agendas and lists are filling up, now feels like a good time to reflect on those happy days spent in Brandenburg. Days that smelled like hot waffles, freshly cut grass and no plans for the near future. This is a collection of photos I took between July and September and up until now, I didn’t actually realise how much time I spent out in the countryside. I rediscovered the fun of trampolines with my cousins, had long conversations about love and age and how both affect each other with my wise great aunt and uncle and then cycled to the closest lake which had the perfect temperature (in September). I spent a weekend with friends near Werbellinsee, dipped my feet into Liepnitzsee while having a sunset beer or two, barbequed in a hidden spot by Wannsee and cuddled with a lot of dogs. Looking back, I didn’t need spectacular mountains or white beaches this summer, friends, waves and overgrown bike paths were enough.
I’m currently sitting in the garden of Clärchens Ballhaus, an old Berlin restaurant and dance hall. The birds are chirping, some mosquitos are up for a battle (guess who’s winning). I’m trying out Snapchat filters, answering some questions for da Travelettes gang, texting with my sister (it’s her first long-haul flight to the US in a few hours and she’s all by herself. Crazy stuff. You can do this grrrrl ♥), there a glass of white wine next to me (day-drinking much) and it’s the last day of July. It’s been a great last three months because for the first time in a while, I somehow managed to shift down a gear or two.
I’m struggling a bit to find my routine at the moment because there is none, the only constant is the number of balls in the air that I sometimes manage to juggle better than at other times. I spend about one-third of my time in an office with other humans, one-third traveling and the rest at home at my desk. The latter is currently (and now in particular!) driving me nuts, but fingers crossed it’s a phase that will pass soon.
Anyway, back to the reason for this post: A colourful recap of the last few weeks powered by my photo roll. I was at the Leipzig bookfair and if you’re German and into books, here’s a selection of reads that I’ve either just finished or that are piling up on my bedside table and don’t get the attention (and time) they deserve.