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Berlin Before Sunrise

An empty bus station standing there alone in the street. Everything is dark. Only the light behind the glass is shining. Behind the glass of the advertisement poster. Of course the light has to be on, or else no one will know why they should buy the newest Surface.

The bus arrives after several minutes in the dark and in light rain, the cold wind gets through my jacket. Some people would laugh at this point and say: but how can you be cold? You’re Belarusian for God’s sake! Isn’t it winter over there all year? First of all, no, it is not winter there all year. I actually remember the times before the whole deal about global warming. Times when summers were constantly hot, winters bitter cold, fall cold enough to make my chin feel numb while waiting for the bus at Kinoteatr Kiev and a mild and pleasant spring. Secondly, just because you come from somewhere, you don’t necessarily have to have all the stereotypical characteristics of that place.

The bus arrives, the doors open. I show my ticket to the bus driver but the bus driver doesn’t care because he is probably even more tired than me.

Dear people, avoid getting on a bus at 7 a.m. That is one of the worst times to do so, beside the rush hour time. The thing is going to be full at this time. So full, you may not even get in. So my advice, take it earlier or at least 10 minutes later.

I get on the bus and feel like a sardine in a can but at least now I can say that I am warm. After the bus there is the train. I always take the one that drives on the surface. Apparently the windows in all sorts of vehicles have always been, and still are the best places to think about stuff.

The trains here usually stand still on the platform for 5 or 10 minutes but that is only when they reach their final destination and are supposed to go back the route they came. I sit there and wait.

It is very early in the morning. Even before 7 a.m.  Some people sleep with their heads leaning on the windows that are all scratched by cent coins. Some people listen to music, some roll their own cigarettes to smoke them later but if there is one thing I love about Berlin, then it is the fact that there are so many people still who spend their time reading books.

The doors close with a tooting sound and we move forward. I live quite outside of town so getting anywhere seems to take ages. I watch students do their homework on their knees in a hurry, trying to insert the right prepositions into their English texts. I try to read Herman Hesse’s Demian that I just got at the American Memorial Library but the things outside the window distract me too much.

And then there comes the most beautiful part of the day. Watching the sunrise as we are passing through the Berlinish landscape in the morning hours. The sky is pink. It is the type of pink that sometimes makes me think of raspberries or strawberry ice cream or the color of rose petals that I dry between the pages of the thick books in my room. Sometimes the sky is orange. Sometimes a little violet. I sit there and watch, wishing I could get off and take some pictures but the journey must go on or I’ll be late for Sociology.

One morning I was making my way through the station Berlin Zoologischer Garten, when I was approached by a lady with a stroller. She asked if I knew how to get to platform 4. I wasn’t sure but told her to watch out for the signs above the stairs. She asked me if I could help her figure out the vending machine so she could buy her ticket. I looked at the watch to see that time didn’t stop since the last time I looked at it but I think I am too nice of a person to ditch a woman with such a cute baby girl.

Lastly I get on another bus and it slowly starts filling with other college students. One can spot them by the white and green shoulder bags with the name and logo of our university.

We arrive on campus that stands there just as abandoned as the bus station in front of my house. We make our long way to one of the several buildings on campus and the day begins for us students while we stare at the clock behind the professor, hoping time will pass faster if we do so, only to realize that it won’t.


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