Home away from home for a month placed me in what used to be East Germany. I was a 20-minute tram ride from language school and minutes on foot from the gate where thousands of East Germans poured across the Wall into the West on November 9, 1989.
Day after day in the fall, the sunny sky was blue, the clouds white and the trees bathed in red, green, orange and yellow. Part of the fun was meeting my hosts, mastering the streetcar, sampling the curry wurst, shopping at the grocery or corner market, eating at the Elf Cafe and strolling across the street to Arnim Park.
This part of suburban Prenzlauer Berg is charming and quiet, and I was always glad to set out on its streets on a crisp October morning and to retreat to it after a long day.
My host is the building engineer at this 5-floor condo building, so everything works flawlessly. Wifi is strong. At school, however, the signal is weak — or the problem is that a couple hundred students get out of class at the same time, and we all want to use wifi. Cafes and other spots where you’re welcome to use wifi are more difficult to find than in the US. German law is being updated, but right now, it still holds wifi providers responsible for what people post on their site.
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