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thoughts

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5 Ways to Maintain Your Language Skills

After more than half of a decade of classes with occasional breaks and six months spent in Mexico, I have finally managed to speak Spanish with a certain fluency. But now that I am back in Berlin, after using this language on a day-to-day basis, I feel like something needs to be done so that all of the knowledge doesn’t get lost on me. The best way not to lose one’s language…

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Berlin Observations thoughts

Why We Need Libraries to Fight Social Inequality

In a district in Berlin among its Turkish residents stood once the Jerusalem Library, not far from the city’s Jewish Hospital. With a gloomy face, 10 year-old me walked up to the building in search of a book to read, as ordered by my mother. There was a new rule in our house at the time, that at least two hours of my day as a third grader with little to no…

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Language Classes are the Mirror of the Soul

  When I came home this afternoon, instead of continuing my crochet project, I started thinking: “I totally want to take Italian classes when I get back to Berlin”. I was somewhat taken with the sound of the word scrittrice, meaning “writer”, when I came across an Instagram post of a book café in Milan I have always wanted to visit but have never come around to doing. My next thought was that…

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Life Stories Lifestyle thoughts Travel

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 but I am sure that there are many more of your kind out there so why not just say it anyway? I still wonder what you were thinking, sticking your hand up my skirt. You did it in passing by. Casually, like it’s something one would just do every now and then. Not brushing slightly against it, not…

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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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German College Life sarcasm student life thoughts

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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cross cultural stuff memories Observations opinion tourism Travel

Torn Between Home and Elsewhere

When I walked the narrow, nostalgic streets of Lisbon, listening to the sounds of Portuguese TV programmes escaping through open windows and watching the yellow streetcars pass by, I thought to myself: “This would be a great place for a honeymoon”. When I visited Madrid two summers ago, I started thinking about what a nice idea it would be to come back  for an ERASMUS semester. How come I rarely experience such…

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End of Term Thoughts

It’s been three hours since I have been sitting inside the Philological library of my university (we lovingly call it “the brain” because of its shape) and I can’t believe that I have another two hours until my French seminar, which I actually can’t afford not to attend and therefore don’t have time to go back home in between. Looking at the bright side of things, my desperation may have been bigger…

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Berlin cross cultural stuff expat blog Germany thoughts

Christmas in Germany

Over the last two days I found out that Russian Orthodox Christians actually don’t care very much about Christmas. I listened to the Russian radio online and noticed that none of the wishes that people sent to each other and had the radio hosts read out loud on air were about Christmas or Christmas Eve, instead everyone was congratulating the rest on the upcoming new year. Some people may wonder, upon reading…

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