It was not love at first sight.

Veggie and beef steamed dumplings

I was intimidated, scared, overwhelmed. so self-conscious of how different and alien I was.

It didn’t take long though, it didn’t take much. One week, a few train and bus rides, some car shares and a couple of nights out and it happened. I fell in love with Berlin.

choose your meat, grill it on site or take it home

Just over a week into my stay here and I can say a few thing with great certainty. Berlin is not a neat and clean city but everything works efficiently (maybe a little too efficiently at times). Berlin is no small but she is easy to navigate. Berlin is not homogenised, she is vibrant, inclusive, accepting and warm.

Bigne with custard and white or dark chocolate sauce

I fell in love with her when I started exploring her, finding my way around using the amazing public transport network, finding my feet and losing them from walking up and down so many steps, cobblestone streets and running to catch a connection.

Giant oysters anyone?

Just when I though I couldn’t possibly love her any deeper, I was introduced to Street Food Thursday at Markthalle IX. A market that celebrates street food from around the world every Thursday. Some of the vendors have permanent stands, while others change from week to week.

Pork belly bun

Markthalle IX is an old indoor market that was brough back to life, it is bustling all weekend from Thursday night all the way through to Sunday with different types of markets and events. Christmas sees an indoor Christmas market here. It is charming and so very Berlin.

Salmon ceviche boats

Thursday’s market was packed full of locals and tourists a like, mostly a younger crowd but definitely not limited to that. A fruit salad of people from hipsters to businessmen, punks to families, young and old. So many different foods on display, beers to drink, the most amazing apple ice tea, and desserts you would likely kill for if pushed.

Bao with your choice of toppings

I thought I loved Berlin before now I know what true love is…

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