Britta's Letters from (and sometimes about) Berlin

Tuesday, 13 February 2018

Use Your Eyes!

©Brigitta Huegel

Berlin has a lot of cinemas - and I am so happy: I have a subscription that allowes me to visit all 12 Yorck Kinos (the photo you see above is one of the smaller 6 cinema halls of the newly built delphilux - smaller hall used to show films in the original English version) -  and a whole year long I can watch every film as often as I want.
(Come to think of it: I could almost give up my appartment... and the seats are very comfortable  :-)
I counted: this week just the Yorck cinemas offer 98 films - though of course in some cinemas they show the same films. (And if you find nothing that might please you: there are so many, many other cinemas in Berlin).
On Sunday, when I was in dire need of a pause, I watched "The Dark Hour" about Winston Churchill.
I was very moved - and learned more by watching than I had learned at school.
Although I read at the moment further "The Churchill Factor. How One Man Made History" by Boris Johnson, it was the fim that reached my heart.
Which was, of course, their intention.
 Well done!

Monday, 12 February 2018

Hurrah! Juchhu!

©Brigitta Huegel

I am so happy: everthing was fine! 

And now I feel as if I have wings again - 

and there is so much time to choose from 

(or so it seems at the given moment - but you know me by now :-) 

Saturday, 10 February 2018


©Brigitta Huegel

Only a few words, as I am occupied, having verbal exam on Monday - in Dutch...
Our seminar starts at 8:30 - yes: in the MORNING! - and over the term I witnessed the sun rising earlier and earlier. As I  ("I'll follow the sun" :-)
A few days ago something was different.
The wooden sculpture of a fox stands there. 
Well-chosen for the aim of an university.
Wich reminded me of my old blog-titel - I frickled it into my header by now, to remind us all that we are both: "Witty and Pretty".

Monday, 5 February 2018

The Last Weeks...

©Brigitta Huegel

... were filled with learning: Dutch grammar, Dutch vocabulary, Dutch newspapers and Dutch books
(And the after pains of the flu). 
Today at the university we did our written exam, the verbal will follow next week. 
there was no time for ironing

©Brigitta Huegel

there was no time for creativity! The gouache colours for my birthday (end of December): still not touched! 

But soon life will start to become vibrant and colourful and exotic (and more orderly - that is what I call serenity..

I feel it. 

©Brigitta Huegel

Wednesday, 31 January 2018


©Brigitta Huegel

Seems that I am over the flu.
I start feeling much better, have no longer fever. Have lost a few pounds - which was NOT necessary and makes me still a bit feeble - but I can think again, the muddiness in my head is blown away.
I still feel weak - but I no longer feel stuck.
I see improvements, and have a lot of plans. I "only" need patience.

So, I'm happy again!  

Saturday, 23 December 2017

I Believe in What I See

©Brigitta Huegel

I always knew: HE REALLY EXISTS! 

Admitted: he works under a few aliases - in the Netherlands he calls himself SINTERKLAAS, and as a man with a full agenda he visits the children earlier than in Germany or Great Britain.
Netherlanders will not tire to tell you about their historical influence in America - think of Niuew Amsterdam (later changed to New York) - and so you will easily see the metamorphosis from Sinterklaas to SANTA CLAUS.

In the Netherlands he arrives at December 5th, and he comes in a steamship from Spain - in pakjesboat 12.
His companion is de ZWARTE PIET (the Black Peter) - and in our hyper-politically-correct time poor Piet (being black and stereotyped) has a lot of hostilities to endure. He tries to convince his adversaries that he is only black because he comes through the chimney, and only all that soot, this fine particulaired matter, is blackening his face, but a lot of grown-ups shout: "Don't pull that black wool over our eyes!" The Mayor of Dordrecht, where Sinterklaas' boat landed this year, manly forbade a demonstration against Piet.
(Nothing new under the sun: in Delft (Netherlands) in 16th century all Sinterklaas-festivities were prohibited. But then, in 19th century, the man in the red cloak with those cute silky white long curls was everywhere accepted, and utterly loved by the children).

My childlike soul still believes in decency, trustworthiness and uprightness.
And in love.

And so it is no surprise that I saw HIM:
Sinterklaas walked through the heavy snow that fell on the Netherlands (as in England).
Walked towards the North Sea to his ship.
And: He was alone.
I could not see de Zwarte Piet.

But then, admidst the heavy snowflakes, a second person materialized - and I understood: SINTERKLAAS, the saintly and sly old fox was so much smarter than his adversaries!!!

Look -- yes! -- trust your eyes: his new political absolutely correct companion is ---

                                                               A WOMAN! 

©Brigitta Hügel

(Ok, Ok - I see that he is also a faithful man: there is a black person in front of him - and yes: it might be de Zwarte Piet...) 

Dear Bloggers, whereever you are in the world: 

I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! 

Yours, Britta                     PS: Believe me - wonders do happen! 

Friday, 1 December 2017

How to Catch a Dutch Owl (so necessary in December)

©Brigitta Huegel

Dear You, 

for me one of the most fascinating aspects of learning a new language is that it allows me glimpses into the character and poetic heart of another nation and culture.
The idioms, the proverbs, the sayings - daily life dances in new clothes!

So I learned a lot Dutch expressions for "THE NAP". (An endangered pleasure...)
Of course you can use the common word: "een dutje" - BUT: how much more vivid and colourful is the older phrase: "een uiltje knappen" - and though the experts quarrel about the first meaning (maybe something with catching a "butterfly"), there is no denying that "uiltje" is the owl that the exhausted man or woman is trying to catch... feathery...soft...tiny...and evasive...
There are many more ways to say (or hide) how you will spent your time after lunch -
but even my Dutch docent was flabbergasted when I served her my finest find:

"Ik ga een Engelse brief schrijven"
- isn't that a very genteel way to hide the truth of napping?

To write an ENGLISH letter (or better: write a letter in English)
is evidenty such a difficult affair

that absolutely nobody should dare to disturb your concentration!

          zz ..