I was a little nervous about returning to Berlin, afraid it would disappoint. It was better than ever and the people I met before were as sound and the new ones were great. The start was a disaster with me abandoned at the airport watching people from the Moscow flight come through the gate. I felt my face alter from a semi expectant grin to anxiety through to fear and on to fury then the terror of knowing that my love was dead/ missed her flight or just abandoned me ( I have vast 'abandonment issues!!'I have been told this by many a counsellor and have obligingly believed it.) My actress friend had gone on ahead in the opposite direction to Kreizberg and I had happily gone to the correct gate and stood waving. My love has different sim cards for every country she touches down (thrift) and for some curious reason her Berlin card was not working. Eventually I phoned a number I had taken last year that I thought was the place we had stayed. The wonderful Chris answered and gave me the address - by the time I found a taxi the only defining landmark I could remember was the Swanglers Club - the actual address had slipped down into my personal delete bin so I phoned Chris again who told the driver the address.
I recognised the building and paid the eighteen euros, rang again and Chris bounded down the stairs with the joyful news that my love had arrived I find it difficult to describe the force of my fury - let me just say that I made it to the fifth floor in one go, usually I wheeze up slow and stop at least twice. Adrenalin is wonderful and I still had breath left to yell my feelings in purest Anglo Saxon. So we began our visit not speaking, Things improved and I realised that I should have taken the address for myself never rely on anybody, ever. A learning experience indeed.
Things improved and our first reading went well and we finished the evening with an invitation to read on Sunday at an open studio event and adjourned to a wonderful pub. One of the more enchanting features of Berlin pub life is the fact that when you invade somebody's table they smile their welcome and talk to you, that and the nice familiar smoky atmosphere. Also the fact that you pay at the end of the evening, which is late but on Friday and Saturday the underground runs all night and nice Turkish food is available in the tube stations. These might seem irrelevancies but they all go to make Berlin my favourite city.
The Sunday gig was fun and funny and I saw wonderful sculptures in the studios and all kinds of excellent art work of every conceivable kind in a building that was once a school.. The third event was a great success with Alan in the chair and so many lovely Germans who shame us with their knowledge of English. Plus all the hip Brits who still crash on Sofas and are cool. This is going on far too long. so thanks to Chris and Regine, Marc and a special mention for Alan and Jacinta and all the lovely East of Eden crew! And thanks to Wu Zhi and I am saving up for that picture. And most of all thanks to Nina and Albertine for friendship. And thanks to beautiful BERLIN