After seeing Mom and Dan off in Frankfurt on September 5th, I was headed back to Berlin where I had less than 1 month left. That week, I had dinner with a colleague along the Spree and attended an Internations event at the nhow music hotel (with subsequent late night famous Berlin doner kebab!). On the weekend, I was off to the 2 day Lollapalooza outdoor music festival in Hoppegarten, where the Berlin horse races are normally held. The first day was a bit chilly but we enjoyed watching George Ezra, Berlin band Beatsteaks, and the closing act, Mumford and Sons. Sunday was a gorgeous day outside so we headed back to the festival in the early afternoon. We found out there was a wine garten area that we weren’t aware of so we enjoyed a couple of glasses of German Riesling in the sun before heading back to the main area for a corn dog and stuffed brezn (i.e. pretzel). My colleague wanted to avoid the rush of the crowd so she left early but I stayed for the Foo Fighters, who of course put on a great show.
The next week, I managed to enjoy some sunset yoga on Museum Island, attend my last “Make Friends in Berlin” meetup at Facciola (which oddly enough was also the location of my first event), Berlin Art Week, and a night out with Roxy and Victor touring around the bars in Prenzlauer Berg. On Sunday, September 17th I went for my last morning run in Tiergarten and then went on the Templehof Tour. It’s an interesting tour which describes the Nazi vision to replace the existing airport in 1936. Ironically, Templehof was never used by the Nazi’s as an airport and was only 80% finished. In 1948-49 the airport played a key role in the Berlin airlift where a plane landed every minute to drop freight in the divided city. Closed in 2008, it is now used as a park by Berliners to enjoy and has also been set up as a refugee camp.
Before Dan came for his last trip to Germany, I joined my last “Bier Gardens for Grown-ups” meetup in Hackescher Markt, wine & cheese plate at Galeries Lafeyette, and drinks with some girlfriends at Juleps New York Bar.
During my last week, we enjoyed a team dinner with our soon to be ex-colleagues, a bittersweet celebration, but a fun night none-the-less. Before I knew it, it was September 28th and I was going for one of my last meals at Tim Raue, a two Michelin star restaurant and rated as one of the world’s 50 best restaurants 2017, with my friend Camilla. An amazing 6 course meal and wine pairing experience and a bit of a splurge for my departure.
The last day in the office was Friday, September 30th where goodbyes were said, hugs were given, and a few tears were shed. That evening, I realized I did not have enough room for all of my things so I headed to the Primark to pick up a cheap extra suitcase and had a glass of bubbly at the champagne bar in Galeria Kaufhof before heading back to the flat to finish packing. I grabbed a beer and a pizza slice from the local joint on my street on the way. The next morning, I visited my local coffee shop, Refinery (where they had finally started to learn my Saturday morning order) and then I enjoyed a nice leisurely lunch outside along the Spree. I was soon heading back to the apartment for the move out formalities and handover of keys. I had 5 bags and the agent helped me get my luggage down to the taxi where the driver proceeded to tell me I travelled like Audrey Hepburn. With mixed emotions, I said goodbye to Berlin. A great experience with many fond memories. Now it was time to return to Abu Dhabi.