I'm Jean Hannah Edelstein, a writer, editor and author. This used to be my personal blog, but now I just use it for amusing and interesting internet ephemera. Head to www.jeanhannahedelstein.com for the full-strength version of what I'm thinking and writing.
Katrin and I went to see Beyonce last night, and the show was amazing in many respects, but somehow I was most amazed by the gentle, flattering wind blowing in her face at all times, as seen here. I want one.
'Because you meet so many new people each week and often, at first, all you have in common is Berlin, you usually have the same boring Berlin based conversation featuring a combination of “How long did you live in Berlin? Where do you live in Berlin? Do you like living in Berlin? Have you been to Berghain? How’s your German? How about that gentrification thing?”’
“In the first days, I felt like a swimmer in a full suit of clothes. Every task I took for granted in the U.S., like knowing where to buy a bottle of tonic water or toilet paper or nail clippers, was not quite what it is back home, despite the way Leipzig seemed very like the U.S. at street level. The garbage and recycling were bewilderingly if also impressively complex—something like 10 different categories to be kept separate. I remember a night in those first days, when I couldn’t find the aforementioned tonic. I noticed a rhubarb soda at my local pizzeria, and at home made myself a very unsatisfying cocktail of gin and rhubarb soda, without ice, as I also couldn’t figure out where to get ice cube trays yet.”
“At some point the fact that you are being an expat ceases to be a matter of happenstance and becomes a personality trait. Or perhaps the personality trait is that you think that the fact that you are an expat is a personality trait.”