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Ekaterina Basinkevich

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Coffee and Waterfalls

Travel begins where the  supply of modern-day coffee as we know it ends. Since I wasn’t in Italy or any other coffee-famous nation at that very moment, this first full thought of the day made more sense than one might think. All American (coffee) chains of Mexico City were left behind hours ago. What lay ahead of us was the unknown, a small village with an extra serving of desperately needed fresh…

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Tuesday Was Market Day

    (originally posted on “Maps and Solitude“) Sometimes there are things you associate specifically with the cities you live in or visit on a regular basis. Mexico City has many such unique characteristics that I may return to in future posts but one of the things that I will always associate with it is the smell of corn. If Mexico City would have to bring out a signature perfume it would…

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Airport Stories You Tell Your Grandchildren

Whenever you make a mistake, you intend to do it better next time. So when for example, you find yourself running around Shiphol airport in Amsterdam to catch your flight at the last second, next time, you tell yourself, you’ll do everything differently and everything will go smoothly. When my next time came along, however, I imagine destiny just decided to lean back with a bucket of popcorn (probably salt and lime flavored…

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A Berliner in Mexico

Two hours before my high school graduation ceremony on Saudi Arabian soil, I met Catherine. I have never been good at talking to random strangers but when constantly traveling from one place to another you eventually realise that, in the big picture, making a fool of yourself is really no big deal. So during my very last hours in the air-conditioned hallway of the science department, the photographs of the past students…

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Dear Coward From Platform 5,

You will probably never read this because you have no idea who I am. You probably don’t even remember what you did but why not just talk about it anyway? I still wonder what you were thinking, sticking your hand up my skirt. You did it in passing. Casually, like it’s something one would just do every now and then. Not brushing slightly against it, not accidentally touching it because you were…

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About Poetry

  It was a small gathering and to be brutally honest, it was only a matter of coincidence and good luck that I remembered the little note in my calendar. In school they used to tell us that if it didn’t rhyme, it wasn’t poetry so when she told me that in her writing, there was no such thing as a metrical pattern, I was yet again convinced that my whole school life…

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What Actually Happens When I Try to “Study”

  A tribute to what my mind and I are going through when I am at home, trying to get things done and study. 1. Alright, international relations theory it is today. Let’s start reading this 30 page text. (reads one paragraph)   2. Wait a minute…I am still supposed to download all the readings from BlackBoard before they are taken down for good. (downloads all the readings for classes, curses the German copyright system)…

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Happy Halloween

For the last couple of days, on the news feeds of my social media accounts, Halloween jokes have been shared and costumes and make-up presented with a pinch of pride. Growing up in Berlin and never having been anywhere near the United States or Canada, this holiday had always appeared to me as something…let’s just say “rather American”. Even though one can find tons of decorations for this theme, I have never seen…

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Germans and Small Talk

I started watching a vlog by a charming American woman who lives in Munich with her German husband. In her cheerful voice full of positive energy, she talks about living in Germany, explaining different aspects of the daily life here to those from abroad while also addressing habits and the lifestyle in the United States. In one of her  videos she talked about how small talk is not really a thing here in Germany…

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Being a Local in Berlin

  A while ago, I wrote about why traveling to other places can be so much more exciting than one’s own hometown. Today’s subject of my random thinking session after I had finally finished my French revision was what makes the difference between living in a country compared to just visiting it for a few days. When you become a local somewhere you notice that the carefree days of being an explorer of…

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