Britta's Letters from (and sometimes about) Berlin

Thursday, 24 August 2017

Customer-friendly? I wouldn't bet on it!

©Brigitta Huegel
Dear You,
yes - of course I have a more precise photo for this blog-post, but the proprietor of this shop for framing pictures might complain - he is very good at that.
Never in my life have I met a shopkeeper who repels his customer more than he does.
Three times I have been in his shop - and each time I came out without service or a frame, but half-deaf ears and lost time.
While he was grinning in a way that I can only describe as "satisfied, triumphant".
First time: "No, we could not repair that frame. It would cost you too much."
(Honestly: he only had to paint a bit of black shelack on it - I could have done that myself - and might, come to think of it: a few drops of black nail-varnish might solve the problem).
He did not even name a sum and then ask me, if I would be willing or able to pay it!
Second time: "No, we do not mount (is that the word?) cinema-posters anymore - it is so much work!" (Honestly: in my youth I have learned to do it myself - it is a bit of work, but not that much - and: this is a handyman's shop for framing! He owns a press!)
And the third time he said to a little photo-framing-job: "But you have to come till tomorrow - after that we are away for holidays, hahaha!"
AND THEN he started to complain: that the Internet is ruining his shop.
And that people and times are no longer what they once were...
And that all the young people would learn in a horrible way how their internet-fixation will ruin the world, their life, and then they will see and regret - "too late, haha!"!
(At that time I had reached the door and slipped out of this dear olde shoppe).

I might have mentioned before that one of my favourite quotes is:
"Turdus ipse sibi malum cacate" -
"The thrush shits her misfortune herself", loosely translated -
and yes: it sounds more elegant in Latin   :-)
The quote means, that birds eat the sticky white berries of the mistletoe - and then men make birdlime of this shit and catch them.

He does the same, yet blames the shitty Internet!










Tuesday, 15 August 2017

I Feel Over-Protected!


Dear You, 
in these political hot times it might sound VERY strange to complain "I feel overprotected!" - but I do, in Germany more and more. The "Jugendwahn" now leads to infantilism - and people are treated like half-wits... 

Look at this: 



Speechless... (I just see: it is difficult to read - though: in three languages...). It is a detailed manual how to put on your tights/ pantyhose). 

I am inclined to write a sarcastic Thank-You-letter.  

"Dear Sir, 
thank you oh so much for your help to put on this enigmatic garment! 
Without your instructions I would still be standing in my master's bedroom, vulnerable, freezing, all up in tears! 
"How", I would ask myself, "how will I ever be able to manage this?" 
A thousand thanks! 
A deeply contented customer. 

PS: Might I ask your permission to offer seminars and tutorials on this delicate subject? 

On Facebook I found this (sorry, do not know who did it or where it came from):   





Thursday, 10 August 2017

The Quest for Beauty

©Brigitta Huegel
Dear You,

when I took this photograph in the Botanical Garden in Berlin, I was a bit agitated because a guard of the museum had behaved very, very strange. 

Now Beauty is a wonderful device for me to calm down. 
I loved the clear white of the waterlilies. 
Took a few more pictures of them - and only now, at home, I saw, that Beauty was not alone. 

©Brigitta Huegel

Not everybody is endowed with beauty - (though, as we all know, beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder, and maybe the frog here is King of the Pond, and every female frog crazy about him and the deep croaking sound of his ballooned cheeks ) - so the ugly does persue beauty intensely, and tries everything to possess it - look at the waterlily above, up in the left corner! 

©Brigitta Huegel

Well, I walked on, searching for perfection. 

I was not alone: 

©Brigitta Huegel




Sunday, 6 August 2017

You Have to Accept a Low Blow in Order to Survive

... And Stand Up Again. 

Dear You, 

in the exhibition "Third Landscape" by Volker Kreidler they show betwitching photos of the vegetation around Chernobyl.

"Reports of vegetation in the exclusion zone around Chernobyl have been increasing over the last few years. While flora and fauna are apparently returning, paradoxes in the natural gene pool have been observed. Despite the radiation, a self-generating ecosystem with high viability is forming in the area. New, healthy trees are growing and replacing dead forests. Lynx and other rare animal species are settling again."

(See the full quote on this photo):



At home I stirred pensively the girolles/chanterelles in my pan - they were coming from a country where - so they had told us - after Chernobyl the decay period would last for a time with so many zeroes following the 1 that I could neither imagine nor pronounce it...

The human mind and the human heart easily forgets, I mused.
That may be necessary to survive. Sometimes you have to be able to forget (at least: not think about it every day) - otherwise you will go mad.
Of course one can wish and pray that mankind gets more reasonable (though at the moment the world does not look like this - yet: has it ever?).
"The lynx, the wolves, the Przewalski horses, the bison, the moose, the wild boars roam through the area again." 

I might join them - I am a part of nature.

Interesting though:
when I looked closely at a leaf from a "healthy tree" from that area, I saw:
1) it was THERE, the leaf, the tree - and its existence I call a wonder.
2) Yet to believe that it survived without a wound - that would be naive.
You have to accept change   -   you have to change, you have to muster all your strength, you have to get up again, though you are tired - only then you have a chance to survive.
Admittedly: it hurts.





Thursday, 3 August 2017

Man, machines, robots, scammers...



Dear You,
actually I only wanted to buy a book on Dutch, but when I walked along the Friedrichstra├če I saw that there was an exhibition "Ars Electronica" in the DRIVE Volkswagen house.
You might know that one of my Moomin Valley mottos is:
"But then, noone can have more fun as he creates himself" (my translation from German, which is in my modest opinion more to the point - in English they translate: "But then, everyone has to make what he can out of life." which of course is true too)  
and I went in, Tot straks! (as the Dutch say, and here you might guess what I am learning now :-)
I stayed over one and a half hour inside that exhibition - so fascinating!
Very diverse topics - all about the idea "What if there would be no clear distinction between man and machine?" 
Here you see the penguins which moved according to your movements in front of them - only the young visitors (and Yours Truly) jumped up and down, and one of my results you see below (that silhouette seems to indicate that I must have added a few pounds in Amsterdam...)


©Brigitta Huegel

Wich I did not! 

©Brigitta Huegel


Tomorrow more from your half-robot (no, I am not sin soleng!) 
Britta 


A PS especially for Joanne: See?!?    :-)