Archive | June 2009

Back in Berlin!

Today at 4.30 am in the morning I arrived at Berlin with the night train from my one week holiday in Lithuania, Litvia and Estonia.

It was an inspiring journey into three countries which once belonged to the Soviet Republic. They became independent in the late 80ies of the 20th century. Each of the countries is full of history, and compared with Germany the countryside consists of nothing but plain nature – forests, lakes, and huge patches of wide open land.

In the days to come I will write the one and the other blog post about my visit. So if you are interested in learning more about the three Baltic States just come back for more information.

Lovely Lavender

Lavender. Photo: Ulla Hennig

Lavender. Photo: Ulla Hennig

Usually, when I hear the word “lavender” I think of

  • lovely soaps
  • the south of France
  • summer
  • the french saying  “joie de vivre” (the Joy of Living)
  • or the Latin “ars vivendi” (the art of Living).

I would not think of the neighborhood I live in, which is rather poor, with people queuing up in front of the local shop in the morning because they need another bottle of beer, with kids hanging around clinging to a bottle of “I’d-rather-not-know-what’s-in-it”.

But: this lovely lavender you see above is part of a small park in my neighborhood. And it reminds me everyday I pass it on my daily way to work that there is also beauty where we often see only ugliness.

An Old Church, a Fountain and a Busy City

Foutain at the Alexanderplatz, Berlin. Photo: Ulla Hennig

Foutain at the Alexanderplatz, Berlin. Photo: Ulla Hennig

Have you ever heard of Berlin, Alexanderplatz?  It is a large public square and transport hub in the Mitte (city centre) district of Berlin. Lots of people are crossing it, heading to the big malls, changing from one kind of public transport to the other one, in the morning off to work, in the afternoon coming back from work.

But there’s also a place like this at the Alexanderplatz. An old church, built in the 13th century, called “St. Marienkirche” (Church of St. Mary). A lot of organ concerts take place in this church. The church is surrounded by a little park, where you can sit on one of the benches and smell the scent of the hundreds and thousands of red roses blooming just now. And you can watch the fountains at the side of the church, going up, going down, rising again and throwing beautiful arcs of water in the air.

So in the middle of busy Berlin you can find a place to breathe, to watch and to listen to the swooshing of the fountains.

Morning has Broken

“Morning has broken” is one of the most played songs of Cat Stevens here in Germany (I still prefer to think of him as “Cat Stevens” and not as “Yussuf Islam”, but I digress). The video you can watch here and listen to doesn’t cover the song in full length, but I liked the photos accompanying the song.

I use a radio alarm to wake me up in the morning, and listening to this song, looking out of the window on a sunny morning, seeing the blue sky prepares me for the challeninges of  the day.

Do you have a fabourite song to begin the day with?

A Photo from a Friend

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Purple, originally uploaded by Karey46.

I have known Karey46, a nice lady from Michigan, for more than one year now. Every Sunday at a certain time we have a one hour chat, presenting our photos and exchanging our experiences concerning photo-processing, talking about every day life, and – of course! – the weather.

We have met each other via photophlow, a web platform with connection to flickr, where you can present you photos and chat about them. Karey46 has some absolutely awesome flower pictures on her flickr page – you must go and have a look!

Knowing that somebody is waiting for me, eager to see new photos, encourages me to keep on with taking photos of Berlin. It is a way to open my world to another person, to share. And I am very glad that with the internet I have the possibility to do so.

By the way, at the time you will be reading this I will have left Berlin for a one week stay in the Baltic states. I will come back at the 28th of June – up to that day you will get blog posts thrice a week as usual, but I won’t be there to comment or to approve new commenters.

Horse in Motion

Horse - charcoal sketch

Charcoal sketch: Horse in motion. Drawing and photo: Ulla Hennig

That sketch was done very quickly. I just wanted to catch the movement of the horse, and I know there are some mistakes regarding the proportions.

I put the photo on flickr first and told a good friend of mine about it. He had given me some drawing and painting lessons, and I wanted to know what he thought about the sketch. I was ready to hear some harsh words, but in fact his feedback was quite positive, and so I had the courage to put it on my blog.

This is one example for the difference between what we think about our works or products and how other people think about them and how important it is to have the courage and ask for other people’s opinions!

June – the Month of Roses

Yellow Rose. Photo: Ulla Hennig

Yellow Rose. Photo: Ulla Hennig

I like the month of June. In the beginning of June, you can see the first rosebuds, and now, in the middle of June, roses are everywhere. The photo above was taken at the next post office, a modern building with some flower beds in front of it. At the moment yellow roses are in blossom in those beds, and lavender is soon going to bloom.

And when I pass those roses I notice a sweet fragrance – which is very unusual because most of the roses today have no scent at all anymore. In the morning on my way to work this is a wonderful experience, and it is the same on the way back, after a day in the office.