Berlin… wall-less

What a difference a few decades make… The last time I was in Berlin, was before reunification. Back then it was unimaginable that the Wall would ever crumble, let alone disappear.

Now, at Potsdamer Platz marveling at the incredible architectural marriage of old and new, my friends (aka Berlin insiders) and I discover Panorama Café. The “fastest elevator in Europe” whisks you up, up, up to enjoy amazing views over today’s Berlin.

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Up here, you can also touch a small piece of the wall on display, and see photos of numerous ingenious contraptions used to escape oppressive East Berlin. This make-shift zip-line really caught my eye.

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Standing here, I remember walking along the wall in West Berlin and crossing a check-point into what was an oppressively dark East Berlin back then, only illuminated by the kindness and hospitality of the people living there.

 

Kindness and hospitality have endured, as evidenced by my friends.

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Roller Coaster

At Santa Monica Pier …

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The roller-coaster is my life; life is a fast, dizzying game; life is a parachute jump; it’s taking chances, falling over and getting up again; it’s mountaineering; it’s wanting to get to the very top of yourself and feeling angry and dissatisfied when you don’t manage it.
Paulo Coelho

 

Altitude

My recent trip to Denver, Colorado, took me from the transcendent architecture of the Denver Art Museum to Larimer Square. Okay, can I ooh and ahh enough about lunch at rioja..? Just a few doors down from where I’m standing here.

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Heads up:

They call Denver the “Mile High City” for a reason.

My accommodation was situated at an altitude of 1,600 m and it took me (my head to be precise) about a day and a half to adjust.

 

 

From there it was smooth sailing. I even had some time and the opportunity to enjoy the people, vistas, food and climate here.

Happy travels everyone!

Forest bathing…

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Hello, fellow friends and travelers,

A recent article in a German magazine has me thinking about great words that do not exist in the English language.

Here are a few of my favorites:

For the tree hugger:  Shinrin-yoku – Japanese, for “forest bathing,” the “practice of taking a short leisurely visit to a forest for health benefits” (Wikipedia: forest bathing)

For Santa and his helpers, a unit of measurement: Poronkusema – Finnish for “the distance a reindeer could travel before stopping to urinate” (Wikipedia: poronkusema)

For the currently stationary traveler: Fernweh – German for the ache / longing to travel or get far away.

For the budget-conscious: Prozvonit – Czech for initiating a cell phone call and only letting it ring once, so the other person has to call back and you can save on minutes. (See Wiktionary).

And finally, for the art lover: Duende -Spanish for “having soul, a heightened state of emotion, expression and authenticity” (Wikpedia: duende), i.e. the power that a work of art can have to deeply move a person.

Happy travels!

 

 

 

Fountains

Hello, fellow travelers and friends,

Fellow blogger Polianthus inspired me to partake in his monthly fountain challenge. After all, what’s not to love about fountains? I even have one in my backyard. Although it doesn’t look anything like this…

 

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Fountain in Rome

 

… it has become a gathering place for all types of birds and a “watering spot” for cats and racoons.  While I enjoy the sounds of water falling, I return to the fountains of Rome.

Ciao – TT

 

 

Free…lancing

Hola, fellow adventurers and friends! I hope, life is treating you well.

In a recent conversation with a friend and fellow freelancer, we agreed that freelancing has been the right approach for both of us. Sometimes we need to remind ourselves, right? Neither one of us could imagine working 9-5, reporting to a boss, being told what to do, etc.

We enjoy not knowing in advance, what each work day may (or may not) bring. We like (or can deal with) irregular schedules. We don’t mind tight deadlines (well…) and thrive on the surprise factor of last-minute trips for conference interpretation assignments (Can you be in … tomorrow?). We’ve learned to juggle and arrange our personal and professional lives to accommodate ups and downs, stress and financial instability in exchange for adventure, independence and freedom.

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I think, Joel Klettke said it nicely:

“Don’t freelance to make a living – freelance to make a life…”

Freelancing quotes