Middle Europe Weekly Small Pleasures #34 – Work hard, play hard

So summer never arrived this year, but luckily we got at least a little taste of warm weather on our weekend trip to Belgium (stay tuned for that blog post) and our road trip down to Italy and France (also coming soon!). Now it’s back to rainy Berlin, and last week was extremely busy at work, but as always there were some good moments, and in Mani’s weekly blog event “Weekly Small Pleasures“, we try to remember those!

Here are this week’s small pleasures:

Hoegaarden rosée and Le Petit Marseillais shower gel : The great thing about a road trip that starts and ends where you live is that you can pack your car with goodies along the way, including liquids, unlike when you fly with hand luggage only! In France I bought some of Hoegaarden rosée beer, which is a kind I really like that is not sold in Germany, as well as one of my favourite shower gels that has the scent of orange blossoms, and this week I got to enjoy both.

Being spoilt: Because of all the rain, the bike parking area in our courtyard is very damp and has started growing moss. There’s also more spiders hanging around, probably because there’s more mosquitoes. On Thursday morning I was heading towards my parked bike and suddenly noticed that I was walking straight into a giant spider web, complete with giant spider at face level. Reflexes ensured that I did a quick U-turn, but slipped on moss and landed on the ground. My clothes and shoes were covered in dirt and moss, so I had to go back upstairs and change, as I couldn’t go to work like that. In the process, I managed to leave my keys inside the apartment, and when I got home later I was locked out. I had to wait about an hour for my husband to come home and it started raining, but luckily I’d packed an umbrella. To my surprise, when he came home, although he had eaten, he went to the shops and bought ingredients to make me some delicious bruschette, and also bought me a ginger beer. There’ s nothing like being spoilt now and then!

Waiting in the rain

Ice lolly: There’s a place selling ice lollies on Eberswalder Strasse, not far from Mauerpark. Even when I’m full it’s hard to resist the cucumber and lemon one, as it’s so refreshing.

TGIF: When it’s been a busy week, there’s nothing better than that “Thank Goodness it’s Friday” feeling.

Dunkirk: On Friday we went to watch the movie Dunkirk, about the situation during World War II where British and French soldiers were trapped on a beach in France as the German army approached – a military disaster. Civilian boats then sailed across the English channel  to pick up the trapped soldiers, and managed to save many. I was particularly interested in seeing this movie because my (British) grandfather was one of the men at Dunkirk who was taken to safety in a little boat. Apparently the maker of the movie interviewed some people who had been there to try to get an impression of what it was like. It must have been horrendous, as while the soldiers were trying to escape, their boats were being continuously bombed by warplanes. I couldn’t help but think that as my grandfather was escaping, he could never have imagined that one day his granddaughter would be watching a movie about this day in a cinema in Berlin. It just shows that we never know what the future holds.

Attending an Almost Wedding: A friend from work is getting married in Spain this week , and they had an Almost Married party for their Berlin friends that was almost exactly like real wedding. Since the couple is Columbian and Spanish, the party included lots of salsa dancing and was a lot of fun. We left at 3am!

Paddle-boating in Treptower Park: On Sunday afternoon the weather cleared up a bit and we wanted to get outside, so we rode our bikes to Treptower park, a big park in Berlin next to the Spree river. There we rented a paddle-boat and went for a paddle up and down the river. It’s always nice being on the water. After our hard work, we stopped for a drink by the river.

Fish and chips: On the way home we rode past a fish and chips shop we hadn’t noticed before and decided to stop for some dinner. It was pretty tasty fish and chips and I’m sure we’ll pop in again sometime!

Lucky ladybird: And to finish off, a ladybird (or Marienkäfer as they’re called here) landed on my computer. In South Africa we used to say if one landed on you, it was good luck. Hopefully a good start to the week ahead!

Check out Mani’s weekly small pleasures at A New Life Wandering, and Thistle and Kiwi’s here.

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4 thoughts on “Middle Europe Weekly Small Pleasures #34 – Work hard, play hard

    • nn says:

      So far I’ve only come across them in France and Switzerland, but I’ll be happy to know if another country sells them too! Haven’t seen them in Germany.

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