Holiday Mile: Berlin (Andrew)

On a Saturday night in Berlin I had half a raw potato for my first course. This was followed by 34 more courses including, as a particular highlight, a single pak choi covered in butter. It was less a meal and more a single plate presented one ingredient at a time. I’m all for trying new things when eating but a menu designed to showcase every ingredient really made me crave a Big Mac and chips.

Even worse, before we could eat the potato we had to listen to it’s origin.

“This is a potato from the farm of Gunther and Helga, just outside Leipzig. Each morning they carefully spray the potato field with a fine mist of honeydew while Gunther sings Dolly Payton’s ‘Jolene’. When it comes to harvest, they ask a local priest to bless their trowel before it is transported by electric car to the market in Berlin.”

After 35 holier than thou pretentious tales I really craved a noose.

I can’t say I enjoyed the meal. It definitely an experience, one I won’t repeat, but if you want to spend three hours slowly eating a grocers one vegetable at a time, then Ernst in Berlin is the place for you.

If, on the other hand, you just want to run, then Berlin is the opposite of Ernst. It’s as simple as can be. It’s completely flat. And because it’s completely flat, you can’t go anywhere in the city centre without being able to see the radio tower that stretches into the sky over Potsdammer Platz. It’s impossible to get lost.

So, for this holiday mile, I decided to run to the main site for the Berlin Wall and back and I decided not to use a map to find my hotel because I knew how to get to it from the tower. An easy run followed with no chance of getting lost. No wonder Berlin is one of the world’s fastest marathons.

Saying that, the lack of variety does mean that it wasn’t the most interesting of runs. Even a treadmill can have an incline. But if all you want is a easy run along wide streets then Berlin is the place for that.

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