Before I begin to tell the tale of our amazing adventures in Berlin, I should branch off in a bit of a digression to explain how the entire trip came to be... ( Click here if you're interested in the backstory!Collapse )
For those who have been keeping up with the entries, you know that my better half has already covered most of the details of our trip. So instead of being redundant, I'm going to dig up all the details of my feelings and paint a picture of the sights to add more depth and insight into our adventure. **For pictures of Yves, Martin, and Schiller, check out Uli's entry.
My beautiful love and I arrived in Berlin on the afternoon of August 12th. We checked into a fabulous hotel provided by Schiller
and carried our bags up to our room. The plan was to meet up with the web guru, a guy named Yves, who had been emailing me all the details and such for a few weeks, downstairs in the Lobby so he could take us out to dinner. Can I just say that I was so nervous that I downed a beer to calm my nerves? Haha. But I found out that it was so easy to be around Yves! As it turns out, he is just my type of person! A fellow introvert who enjoys Futurama and can be a bit awkward at times! Perfect! Aware that I was a vegetarian and that my favourite food is indeed Indian, he took us to a splendid place called Samadhi. During dinner, he briefly mentioned the itinerary for the next couple of days. I was still in a state of shock that all of this was happening (and that the food was so scrumptious)!!
Jenn & Uli in front of a piece of the Berlin Wall
August 13, 2009
Berlin is absolutely fantastic! The city is so colorful and bright albeit its stormy history. Creativity seems to blossom at every corner, every nook and cranny. Graffiti decorates many walls, even adorning the faces of houses, and paints a picture of freedom of self-expression. This is a place of artists, of musicians, of an entire blend of international guests who come to stare down the face of a broken wall and realize its profound significance. It is a place that breathes history, a place that weaves stories with every winding road.
Jenn with two soldiers at Checkpoint Charlie
August 13, 2009
I loved the technicolor round roof of the Sony center, the six floors of the Kaufhaus des Westerns (KaDeWe) with all the tantalizing displays of food, the wavy ground of the Holocaust Memorial with its labyrinth walls of varying height, the castle-like club Adagio with all the Prosecco ladies could drink (and with a wall of all the famous people who had ever been there like George Clooney, Tom Cruise, and Michael Jackson), and the famous TV Tower that essentially served as our only way of gauging where we were in proximity to anywhere else. I could have spent all 3 days in the Gemaeldegalerie! I was impressed that, for 4 euros, I was able to see at least two famous pieces of art from almost every artist I had ever studied (I've taken 15 art history courses...). Most impressive, in my opinion, was Caravaggio's "Amor Vincit Omnia." I must have stood in front of that painting for at least a half an hour!
It was absolutely splendid to meet up with the musician Martin Herzberg
, who currently resides in Berlin! It was a joy to have him accompany us around the streets of Berlin, from the historic Checkpoint Charlie thru the Brandenburg Gate and more! We sat down for a drink with the ever-talented Martin and he gave us copies of his new CD. If you have a chance, please visit his site and listen to his music or buy the album! Run the Self is one of my absolute favourites! I often listen to it on repeat... so do check it out!
Now, without further ado, I'd really love to write about the interview with Christopher
as that was the entire purpose of the trip!
Within a few seconds of absorbing the presence of Christopher von Deylen, it becomes apparent that one is in the company of someone absolutely extraordinary. There is a quiet, but strong intensity about him. He is very neat and clean cut, handsome, and has eyes that penetrate to the core of who you are. Needless to say, it was a bit intimidating to be around this musical genius. And yet, for all his fame, he was very down to Earth. When I was invited to sit down in his studio, Christopher asked me if I was nervous and when I said, "Admittedly yes," he replied, "Me, too." He is charming, quite effortlessly, too!
I'm not sure if you realize, but he has collaborated with several famous musicians such as Colbie Caillat, Sarah Brightman, Kate Havnevik, Peter Heppner, Lang Lang, September, and Tarja (of Nightwish fame). And yet this impressive list is not what sets him apart from all the rest. Christopher von Deylen has experienced many incredible things in his life. Only recently before our encounter had he returned from being aboard Polarstern, a scientific vessel in the Arctic Sea for a month! He also made the long journey from London to Beijing via car! His deeply introspective nature is profoundly apparently in his music (as well as his eyes). One begins to sink into the intricate layers of his melodies to find themselves enjoying such depth and texture that most mainstream music fails to achieve. It is a meditative experience to listen to this atmospheric music... the emotion is so personal, so raw, so honest. To be invited to probe the mind of the creator was an incredible blessing!
Having never conducted an interview before, I was shaking with nervousness. While sharing the sentiment that he, too, was a little nervous seemed to help, what really anchored me was seeing my love over Christopher's left shoulder. I was completely winging the questions, though everything came naturally and the whole event seemed more like a personal conversation. Seeing Uli in the corner with her gorgeous smile and thumbs up of encouragement instilled in me just the confidence I needed!
Berlin was an incredible trip! I gained a handful of new friends, experienced so many different parts of the city, and learned a lot more about myself during my encounter with Christopher. Of course with all the excitement of a full itinerary, it was really wonderful to enjoy some downtown in the hotel room, relaxing with the love of my life.