Sunday, October 2, 2011

Mauerpark: flea market and karaoke

Hier gibt es weder eine Mauer, noch einen Park.“-Wladmir Kaminer
[there is neither a wall, nor a park here.]

"Im Mauerpark fließt alles zusammen: Wahnsinn, Spaß, Entspannung, Widersprüche, Konflikte. Ein Ort, wie ihn nur Berlin hervorbringen kann. Man kann ihn nicht analysieren. Man muss ihn erleben."

[Everything comes together at the Mauerpark: craziness, fun, relaxation, contradictions, conflicts. A place, that can only happen in Berlin. You can't analyze it. You just have to experience it.] - Tip Berlin article

Mauerpark: (literally, "wall park"), in an area formerly part of the "no man's land" of the Berlin Wall, in the neighborhood of Prenzlauer Berg (north-east Berlin). Every Sunday, this place turns into flea-market craziness, filled with tourists and locals, and anyone wanting to make a quick buck, selling bikes, Trödel (one man's trash is another man's treasure...), jewelry, leather bags, second-hand clothes, Turkish delicacies, Wurst, dishes and antique housewares, homemade cake, artsy T-Shirts, etc. There is so much stuff and so many people stuffed into such a small area, it makes you claustrophobic and anxious to get out into the park next door.

Then, in the afternoon, people start to shift from the flea market over onto the green spaces nearby...and they start to save seats on the stone steps of the amphitheater early in order to catch the main attraction. There is an Irish guy who runs a highly-popular karaoke from his laptop, with big speakers he sets up. Check out the crowds! We sat here for maybe 6-7 songs, which ranged from energetic and bad (and thereby fun and hilarious) to serious and not-so-great....But it was just amazing how many people were gathered around to listen. The crowd is really great and claps and sings along, cheers and supports the people singing.

And as you can see, we've been having absolutely gorgeous weather, so people were really out enjoying it! In Germany it's a three-day weekend because Monday is Tag der deutschen Einheit (Day of German Unity), so lucky for them!

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