Eleven Tips for Aspiring Writers

Eleven Tips for Aspiring Writers

I began blogging exactly four years ago, at the age of 22. At the time, I was living with my parents in Ireland. I’d graduated from university a few months earlier and had failed to find a job. Consequently, I had no money to travel or to do any of the other things that make … Continue reading

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Once upon a time in leafy Charlottenburg…

Once upon a time in leafy Charlottenburg…

“Did you ever have any interesting neighbours?” I asked Frau Bienkowski. She paused to consider. “I used to live next to a woman who worked as a newspaper deliverer. She would get up at the crack of dawn and go from house to house with her Berliner Morgenpost cart. She earned pittance; I felt very sorry for her. Then … Continue reading

Gambling on the American Dream

Gambling on the American Dream

Newark train station, New Jersey. Homeless men rush to open the door for you. Then, looking you right in the eye, say: “Do you think you could help me out, Ma’m? Spare a few cent?” Inside, unfortunate people sleep with their belongings on the grand benches in the waiting hall. Some stay  seated – their … Continue reading

Ever the Bridesmaid…

Ever the Bridesmaid…

Frau Bienkowski hasn’t managed to marry me off yet, which is a pity since she likes a good wedding. She’s always talking about William and Kate’s and is the first to know about the appearance of a new photograph of Prince George. She’s interested in failed marriages too. Like those of former president, Christian Wulff … Continue reading

Help! I am an insufferably smug gardener

Help! I am an insufferably smug gardener

Okay, I admit it. Ever since I planted some radish seeds and bought a pot of dahlias, I’ve become quite insufferable. I’d been looking for a new hobby, you see. My small, north-facing balcony was looking sad and bare so I decided to take up gardening. But before you could say “from seed to sprout” … Continue reading

Why I want to get naked at Teufelsee

Why I want to get naked at Teufelsee

A little while ago, LSB and I were cycling through a forest. The sun was glistening through the leaves. The air was sweet. All you could hear was the crunch of tyres on the path. Somewhere along the way, we took a wrong turn and found ourselves at a lake. A sign told us we … Continue reading

The Quiet Revolution

The Quiet Revolution

Susan Cain’s “Quiet“came out in 2012 and her TED talk about introversion has been viewed more than 8 million times. So having just finished reading the book, I’m a little late to the party. But it’s one of the few I’m happy to be at! Susan Cain’s argument is that introverts live in a world … Continue reading

Streetwalking in Schöneberg

Streetwalking in Schöneberg

I had some time to kill the other night, so I walked up and down Bülowstrasse. It’s in the Schöneberg area of Berlin, where Albert Einstein, Hans Fallada and David Bowie all lived at some point. It was only 7 o’clock, so I was surprised to see prostitutes lining the streets so early. There were … Continue reading

Lidl children

Lidl children

Whenever I go to Lidl, the cashier asks if I’m collecting the football stickers. When I say “no,” she looks surprised and a tiny bit relieved. Yesterday I went to another branch closer to work. There were loads of little girls loitering at the entrance, eyeing up the customers. If they had been bigger, I … Continue reading