Saturday, 26 May 2012

Day 11 - Berlin to Posdam

Day 11 - Berlin to Potsdam

Tempelhofer Park, Berlin

Today we only have a travel time of 40mins south to Potsdam and were in no mad rush, so like every other sleep loving being, we treated ourselves to a small lie in. Damien and his house mates put on a cracking breakfast spread, which starred the likes of cheese, rustic bread, home made bread, tomatoes topped with cheese, rocket salad, iceberg lettuce, omelette with capers and an array of other great foods. This was also accompanied by the european standard hot coffee. Another stella breakfast (although you could actually classify it as brunch - but who's counting?). It was nice to have the time to relax and spend time with our lovely hosts knowing we only had a short drive ahead of us. There was a mix of nationalities living in the house, which is quite common in Berlin; French, German and Polish people all living together. And although they try to communicate in German together, the main conversation is in English. With a that short journey on the cards we used the extra time to do a spot of sight seeing. You don't always get the chance to really see much of the town you're playing in due to long drives or other factors, and it's a shame. But that's tour for you.

After saying our goodbyes to Damien and friends we headed out in the hot, not-a-cloud-in-the-sky day to Tempelhofer Park, an abandoned airport which has been turned into a huge community park. Everything is as it was when it was a working airport but now it has the added bonus of BBQ areas, baseball field, look out towers and even an information point. Apparently it's four times the size of Central park. Fancy. It's rare to find such large area of land in a city that hasn't been transformed into a shopping centre or turned into houses. The decision for Berlin to not do this and turn into the huge park that it is for everyone to enjoy is refreshing and frankly awesome. I like Berlin. I just checked with Mike. He's nodding confidently in agreement as he drives. We like Berlin, a lot!

The Kuze, Potsdam
We arrived in Potsdam slightly late due to typical traffic and made our way to the venue 'Kuze', where we were greeted with a beaming smile. That smile was from Katscha a delightful kind person who organised our show for us. She's also an excellent cook! 'Kuze' is a run by volunteers and it gets funding from university student contributions, as well as a few other sources. The atmosphere around the place is wonderful and everyone is pretty happy. It has a screen printing studio, a small intimate theatre/performance space (where we we to play later), a really cheap bar, sleeping/teaching space, practice spaces and more. We were impressed. Once our tour was complete, we took a walk into the beautiful small town of Potsdam and into one of it's nice parks. Did you know in Potsdam they have many parks but you are not allowed to sit nor walk on the grass, and must merely walk through them. It's a shame you can't sit and enjoy the surroundings of the well kept parks.

The beautiful Potsdam
A lovely park you cannot sit in and enjoy
We unloaded our gear in and sat down for some food which had been prepared for us by Katscha. Fresh salad and a vegetable Gouda cheese bake. My, my, my, was it goood ah! German cooking is different to French cooking, more similar to English cooking. We have been over-welmed with how well we have been fed and looked after since being on tour. Once our food had settled we warmed up our vocal chords, did a few lunges, and cracked on with business. We were again treated to a little light show while we played…. until the fuse blew when then lovely sound man turned on his tiny desk lamp. In the dark we continued to play and before we knew it we could see again. We were happy to discover everyone was still there! We were very humbled with their reception to our music/noise and were very happy to sell a few more records.

Kuze bar & the lovely Katscha
There was a show also happening the same night a few minutes walk await at a squat/venue named The Black Fleck. It was a record release show for a local band and they were kind enough to not clash the times of our two shows so everyone could enjoy both if they wanted it. Katscha and friends invited us to join them at the other show after we played, which we obviously jumped at the chance. What a great show it was too. Crazy cheap bar and quality hardcore/punk. We got excited, we got boozy, and even bought a record each. Drunken purchase? Most possibly. Good purchase? Definitely. We hung out with some of Katscha's friends, drank some more beer and talked to them about Nietzsche and the film Inglorious Bastards. Somewhere along the way Katscha had picked up a large mechanical Swiss arm knife off the side of the road being thrown out. It still worked and was the most eerie, over-sized swiss army knife you've ever seen. Knives and pair of scissors moving up and down slowly. Mental. It will haunt me in my dreams. By the end of the night we could already do a pretty good impression of it with our arms.

We said goodnight to our new friends at the Black Fleck and headed back to the Kuze with Katscha, over-sized swiss army knife in hand, and had a great music chat until the early hours of the morning before we were left to fall asleep.

Today was a smashing, stress-free day and we very much look forward to returning to Potsdam in the future, who are a lovely looking bunch by the way!

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