Berlin is probably the city I had heard most about before I actually went there myself. Everyone I spoke to adored it, and arty neighbourhoods, a tendency to reject a surveillance culture, prices and excitement all seemed to add up to a sure bet.
The subway (oh, how I love a good subway), the cycling (there wasn’t a stretch of road or street without bikes), and the kind of effortless cool you see in the people who live there. It’s not so much fashionable, as it is an active decision to stop caring about how you look or what you wear.Even though I’d heard that it would be difficult to speak any German with the level of English-speaking people living in Berlin, I used a lot of my high-school knowledge, and while (almost) everyone could speak English, they were speaking German.
Each neighbourhood in Berlin seems so distinct from every other; not just the architecture and buildings, but the atmosphere. Just on the other side of the Spree from the East Side Gallery, it suddenly felt perfectly natural, to walk and sit and drink in little cafés.