German is a hard language to learn, I am told. Part for many reasons why this is so, is the German habit of stringing words together, to form a new word. Like the word “Naherholungsgebiet”. It consists of three words: 1.) Nah 2.) Erholung 3.) Gebiet – which mean 1.) near or closeby, 2.) recreation and 3.) area. And this is exactly, what this monster of a word means: An area for (human) recreation, that is closeby (their living quaters). The term is used for parks, stretches of woodland or lakes, that are in proximity of human conglomerations and reachable without the need to travel, to get to it.

Berlin, at least what once used to be West-Berlin, features quite a lot of those Naherholungsgebiete. As it was closed in by the Eastern Bloc for so long, this was the only way for Berliners to get some fresh air and the feel of an outing.

Thus, we are, to this day, lucky to enjoy, what makes Berlin so special: big parks, wild green spaces, water areas and woods in the middle of a city.

Today, sweetheart and I walked around lake Hermsdorf, which is just a thirty minute walk away from our flat. Despite it being so late in the year, it was still very nice to look at, with the autumn colours still on. The only annoyance were the countless other folks out and about on bikes or their feet. But this is a direct result of the pandemic, I guess. Everyone wants to get out into the fresh air, these days, as this is pretty much the only thing still allowed.

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