Bildungsroman

So… I’m moving to Berlin. I regard this coming year as the introduction to a more long-term emigration. Despite being my Erasmus year in a 4 year course of German and Music at Liverpool, I have few doubts that I’ll be back on a permanent basis after I graduate. With Brexit and May plunging my generation further and further into debt and unemployment I don’t think there’s much left for me here (family aside of course). Liverpool seems to have made me into a bitter Lefty to say the least.
This year I’ll be working at a Dolmetscherin in the city centre and living in Kreuzberg (contract pending.) Lena and I (my Austrian flatmate and dear friend) visited Berlin last week to secure a roof for August – but that’s a story for another day.
All in all I’m excited to be back in a city, especially Berlin. Home feels so small – everyone knows you – you can’t go anywhere without bumping into someone you know. You can’t even smoke a cigarette without someone’s mum walking past and asking after the family!
After a few more shifts hopefully I’ll have enough to put down my deposit without borrowing from mum. That said I don’t own a single piece of office wear…
Welcome to the real world Connie! 💸

I’m gunna be an IT girl. I’m gunna have it all and I’m gunna take Berlin by storm. I can just feel it! I’m due a break.

Hopefully and nervously yours,
Connie

Schwierig Schwierig Zitrone Schwierig 🍋

People laughed at us. Landlords scoffed and estate agents sniggered but we secured a flat in Kreuzberg in less than 72 hours.
When we landed we were greeted with the heaviest monsoon rain I've seen all year. Lena also pointed out how floral German rain smells compared to the hard water of the UK. After arriving at the hostel we took the U-Bahn to our first viewing in Kreuzberg. The idyllic location hosted several independent restaurants so we visited 'Zitrone' for some Spätzle and Riesling. The first flat had a bad layout so we proceeded to search Bio-Markt notice boards for available flats, only to find yummy-mummy adverts for Tierpark Yoga.

The second viewing was promising but it soon became apparent that we were not the calibre of tenant the landlord required. The flat was far too big, but not big enough to host the 20-30 odd viewers who attended the open house.
Heartbroken we sat on a doorstep in Friedrichshain trying to find some motivation. The 4 hours sleep the night before hadn't done us any favours and my feet were beginning to throb. We decided on picking up dinner and pastries for breakfast at the local EDEKA and headed home to ring around for more viewings.
The second day we awoke to a building site outside our window – lucky really because our phone died and we had missed our alarms.
After some whistle stop sight seeing (Zoologische Garten, Siegessäule, Reichstag, Brandenburg Tor, Fernsehen Turm usw.) we visited Kreuzberg but the atmosphere had changed drastically. After getting harassed by some boys in a local park we headed for the flat for a sit down. Whilst we waited for the landlord, two boys ran part grinning in hot pursuit by two policemen. We knew the flat was a write off when one of them pulled his gun.

A little shook up, extremely tired and loosing our sanity we took the U-Bahn to Möckernbrücke to view our penultimate flat – a fully furnished dream location gal pad.
Full of hope we headed home to forward all our documents to the agency and were rewarded with a lunch-time meeting the next day.
After viewing the final flat the next morning we headed to the agency. 'Shook' doesn't come close to describing the feeling I had when the agency asked us for €10,000 up front (6 months rent and deposits). Understandable as it may be, with out guarantors not being native and Lena unemployed, I had to really beg to get it down. We have to cancel or interrail trip but it's worth it to have somewhere to live next year.

Getting into the plane was like a dream. My blisters had blisters, I'd passed that brilliant level of exhaustion where everything was funny and had come out the other side into a state of zombie I've only ever experienced at festivals until this weekend.
The good news is that now we have a plan and we have a roof and it has a fitted kitchen! (Most flats come unfurnished in Berlin because everyone rents and brings their stuff with them, including an entire kitchen)
Next up is registering at the citizens Büro, opening a bank account and starting work.
BRING IT ON!