Friday, 7 December 2007

Newtown vs Berlin - Friday day off

Friday begins well - well a little seedy after the high of coming home from German class last night to AH & a bottle of red wine.
Thursday was an ok day at work - lots to do but it stayed coolish most of the day (the broken down bus and deluge of rain on the way in is another story). It got really hot and humid about 1/2 hour before I had to trek up Balmain Road to catch a city bus so I was nice and stinky and buggered for class - teacher looked fresh and lovely as usual. When she says the English word verbs, she pronounces it "werbs". However, mein Deutsch ist mangelhafte Aussprache (as is my sentence structure, no doubt) so I don't say anything but can't help but smile. It's a fun class and the ice has broken a little so we have a laugh - often my instigation as I get a bit hyper from the day.
Back to today -
I walk up to Newtown to meet up with friend, Poppy and we talk about lots. She tells me she's always wanted to go to Berlin suggests it's probably like Newtown. Hmm, this is a hard one - Newtown is, for me, such a fabulous place to live and Berlin is Berlin. Newtown is Newtown. Maybe she is thinking of the connections people can make in each place – with both places being sometimes edgy, often fun or interesting. There is, perhaps an openness in both places for ideas, fresh outlooks? Oh, I don't know. I'm no expert on either and it’s too long since I was there even though I try to keep read up.
I leave my glasses with Riyadh at the Optometrist for repair (yes, that's his name - means "beautiful garden" and he grew up in Lebanon, not Saudi Arabia) & do bank & post chores. When I get back, I mention the Berlin - Newtown comparison. We look at each other and immediately say how much we love Newtown.
Then the sky falls in! I mean it was bucketing down, the sky was dark only to be lit up by lightening and the thunder cracked directly above us. I had no choice but to sit it out with Riyadh and talk about how good Europe is with recycling, water and solar heat. With weather like that outside, discussing weather is unavoidable - he told me how he loved the rain when he was in Uni in Lebanon - he lived near the mountains and near the sea. He may love being in Newtown but I could see how much he loves his birth country. I was suitably charmed by this tall and quietly spoken man.
When people talk about a place they love, their eyes become beautiful.

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