“Excuse me while I pee…”

“Hey! Where are you from?”

Three AM, some random Berlin club and I’m standing in the bathroom stall about to close the door when a hand snaps in and prevents me from shutting it.


“You here with friends?”

“Yeah, loads of them…”

“Want to have some fun?”

“Um…no…I’m good…I’m trying to go to the bathroom.”

“Oh, I’ve got some real good stuff. Just try a line. You don’t like, it’s free.”

“No, I’m fine…I really just want to pee. I think we’re leaving soon.”

“Oh come on, it’s real good Berlin stuff.”

“Well you see…I’d really like to go to the bathroom.”

“Oh yeah, no problem, no problem…but it’s real good stu–”

“Excuse me while I pee,” shutting the door squarely on his smiling face. This isn’t exactly the time–or place–for conversation.

Earlier, the French guy I was here with and I joked about how this was the place people sell you cocaine in the bathrooms. Well, there you go. After spending several days in Cologne, I had left using mitfahr to go to Berlin since everyone says you must go to Berlin. Staying at the Pfefferbett, I had met the French guy and now we were here in some large old industrial building with smoke, flashing lights and “German dancing” which I noticed was very different than “American dancing.” Having waited in line where women were turned away, I was concerned we weren’t going to be let in. Trying to act nonchalant and casual, the doorman looked at his boss (who was covered in tattoos, rings and leather) who then nodded us in. After taking away my camera, we climbed the stairs and followed the music…to a nearly empty dance floor. It was just after 1AM–where was everyone? In Seattle, bars close at 2AM.

An hour later, the place filled up as I realized once again, the Germans make party very late. Not in the mood, not at the right place, and extremely tired from having stayed up until nearly 7AM the night before with some Berliners, we left close to 4AM. The French guy left to meet up with his host for couchsurfing and I caught a cab back to my hostel–grumpy and tired.

“Where to?”

“My hostel please.”

“But it’s only 4 AM…”

“I know, but I’m tired.”

“Where are your friends? It’s too early.”

“Gone. Plus I’m in Berlin by myself. And the sun is coming up.”

“You’re in Berlin by yourself…”


“Why did you come to Berlin by yourself?”

Ok Mr. Cab driver, cut the chitchat and let’s just take me back to my hostel …

This entry was posted in Ch. 1: Africa and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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