Say that 3 times fast!
Today was a pretty uneventful day, but at least there was some good food. I headed over to the Marheineke Markthalle (another green market) in the morning to buy some bread, cheese and veggies. I had seen online that the Marheineke Markthalle had been newly (re-)opened as a more yuppie/bourgeois market with mostly organic goods, so I was wary of the prices, but I needed some food.
My roommate lent me her bike for the trip, so I headed off in the general direction of the market, certain that I knew where I was going. When I got all the way to Mehringdamm (i.e., too far), I stopped and looked at the map posted at the back of a bus stop. Indeed, I had taken the wrong street. What I needed was something running parallel about 100 m south of me. So I took a cross-street and found myself in the heart of Kreuzberg.
Clearly the gentrification of Kreuzberg has been increasing in these past years, as now the neighborhood seems to be made up entirely of young German scenesters and their many, many foreign counterparts. The stores and bars reflect that, as does the Marheineke Markt. The (covered) market was quiet and serene, with wide passageways between the booths, pristine shiny flooring, and high ceilings. There were actually only two stands selling fresh produce. All the rest were selling prepared foods or bread, most of it “specialty” stuff that cost quite a bit of money.
I saw that comté cheese was on sale at one stand, so I got some for myself, and then got a bunch of vegetables and fruits from another stand. Cherries and strawberries are in season, so I bought a bunch of those and then all the vegetables necessary to make channa masala (chickpea curry). After several days of eating döner kebaps and the like, I needed to lay off the meat.
I stopped for lunch at an “Italian” café / enoteca in the market, which was serving a spinach-feta quiche with an organic salad. The thing cost me 9€, it was under-seasoned, the crust was soggy and the quiche hadn’t been warmed through (better to just serve it cold, then). I tried not to think of the fact that, at the Turkish food stand I visited last evening, I could’ve stuffed myself silly for 3€.
As has always been my problem with shopping + bikes, I returned to the bike with too many groceries. I managed to perch them in the bike’s basket, using the handles from the bag to tie them to the basket, and then off I went. I didn’t get lost on the way home, but I took a much busier street that required alternately maneuvering through vehicles and foot traffic. Most of Berlin has lovely bike paths that are separate from roadways, but this isn’t true for every street.
Anyway, the rest of my day went along relatively quietly. I set about blogging and wrapping up my own sublease (for my Chicago apartment), then made curry and continued some work on my computer. One roommate came home later that evening after a few drinks and we sat in the kitchen and chatted about Berlin's ongoing gentrification while she tried my curry and I ate cherries.