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Berlin: Herbst

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I am thankful for: bike. Flat in Neukölln. Finding an interesting job next to my flat. Colleagues. Coffee. Canal. Discarded clothes in the street. New people. New language. Language classes!

I am concerned about: pandemic. Global news. Terrible German ability.

Just over a month since moving abroad, with a spare evening on my hands and some *strong* rose incense burning... here's what I've learnt so far.

- Don't sign a super dodgy contract at a place called "Cinema for Peace". It might look great... but trust me, you'll look back and laugh in disbelief.

- In fact, just quit on your first day (even better, do it with a pal. I did with Evie).

- Don't panic and sign up for an online law conversion. It will be very hard, you will be very stressed and... you won't get your deposit back. Studying from cafes will be fun for 2-3 days. You can return to it. Don't force everything, always.

- Sign up for some language classes. a) You'll meet great friends. b) When the second lockdown hits, it will become your main form of social interaction.

- Running into on-the-brink-of-lockdown bars enquiring about jobs won't bear fruit. Although you will get free drinks.

- Even so, talk to the bar-tenders. Things work out. Times are tough for them.

- Call your parents. They will understand probably more than you'd expect.

- Have faith. Cry on the street. You'll find the greatest people from it, amazingly.

- Meet friends of friends of friends of friends. And their housemates.

- Explore the city. Cram in the museums and galleries. They'll shut quickly.

- Get out of the city. Cycle around a lake.

- Enjoy the not-knowing.

- Don't panic about another lockdown: it won't be as intense as the UK. People obey the guidance. The government are less inept. Exercise and do your hausaufgaben!!

- Avoid UK news more than you have. It's not helpful. Attempt to read Tagesspiegel.

- While away an occasional evening with beautiful nutters. They will restore you.

- Sooner than you think, you'll find a job. It will be good. Enjoy it! Sign this contract. Stop thinking too far in advance. Do some Yoga. Buy the biscuits.

- Be brave. Have courage and be kind.

- Remember history, and respect it. Keep interested. Learn.

- Wander along the canal. For miles and hours, with friends and without. 

- All will be well.