samstag in friedrichshain

We spent Saturday wandering around a new Kiez, Freidrichshain. I expected to be be greeted by a neighborhood of gruff old Ossis and squatters. I had no idea how gentrified it had become. I mean, we didn’t even have the biggest stroller at the farmer’s market. Can you believe it? That is some serious gentrification, Leute!

view from Warschauerstr

We started our journey at S-Bhf Warschauerstr where I spotted, but did not photograph, a stunning example of a Hipster Dad pushing a stroller. He was wearing an ironic sweater vest, tweed, and a carefully tied to look as if it had not been carefully tied scarf. When I saw him, I knew I were entering surprisingly familiar territory. We did go to NYU, after all.

rununculus at the Boxhagnerplatz Markt

Our first stop was the Wochenmarkt, which is basically just a farmer’s market that extends beyond meat and produce. We didn’t buy anything, because I kept insisting that we didn’t know how long we would be out and what if our organic buffalo went bad? OMG, WE CAN BUY ORGANIC BUFFALO IN BERLIN?! The yuppie food gods have answered my prayers. While I was thinking about buffalo au poivre, Shoshana was doing this…

Why do so many German playgrounds have giant, completely-intentional, puddles? One day I’ll post a picture of the water-area in our local playground. I like to refer to it as “The Pit of Death.”

Eventually we lured her away and made our way over to Karl-Marx-Alle to check out the TrendMafia Designmarkt and take some pictures.

The boulevard is lined with Stalinist era wedding-cake style buildings. I find the tiles pretty ugly, but there’s no doubt this was meant to be a very grand street. There’s still some of that atmosphere today; although, many of the buildings need a bit of a facelift. Some new tiles here, a power-washing there.

I also like spotting some of the socialist art. The worker above is guarding a door with his sledge hammer.

We were really looking forward to going to the Karl-Marx-Bookstore, because silly us we thought it was still there. No! It went out of business FOUR YEARS AGO and somehow this information managed to escape us. Our hearts are broken. Ok, maybe just mine. Jon is not nearly as dramatic.

At least the sign is landmarked, and the shelves inside were just like they use to be, even if they were depressingly empty. I think some sort of production company works there now. oh, gentrification, you raise me up and you pull me down. sigh.*

*See? I did say I was dramatic. And, yes, I know I’m part of that gentrification, too.

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