Oh how I am glad September is over. It was an insane month of almost non-stop work interspersed with a visit from a friend, a wedding, a festival, a visit with a family member, a cold, an outpatient surgery, and a trip to Rome at the end of it all. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
On the first weekend of the month, the Melodica Festival took place not too far from where we live, and I hadn’t been to a show in a long, long time. It also just so happened that my pal Geert was playing the festival, and his set time lined up perfectly with our plans, so we dropped by to see him strum some sweet tunes. It was B.’s first concert, which he enjoyed, and afterward we headed off to Neukölln to celebrate the marriage of our friends I. & F.
The following weekend, a friend of mine from college (who shares my birthday with me) arrived in town with her friend from back home. They had spent a few days in London and were in Berlin for a few more, so we took them all over. It was nice that they both weren’t so interesting in hitting tourist-y things that hard, so one day they saw the East Side Gallery and other sights on their own, and the rest of the time was spent eating awesome food, drinking beer, and wandering all over in Kreuzberg and Neukölln.
Unfortunately, however, I got sick just before they arrived in town, and I spent the better part of two weeks fighting off a cold, which really sucked considering the deadlines and stress I was under. But it is what it is.
As already mentioned, I worked a lot, and I’m happy to say that I finished editing three different books during that month. It was definitely challenging but overall I am proud of accomplishing so much and happy I get to work with such diverse, interesting, and creative people. Additionally, it’s teaching me a lot about balance: how to balance my work with my life, and how to be good to myself even when I don’t have much flexibility with my time. That said, I decided one day to not work and go get a haircut. Since my hairdresser/best friend lives in the States, I don’t have someone I trust with my hair just yet, and I’ve only paid for two haircuts in the five years I’ve lived here. This recent person though, I really like, and she convinced me to take the plunge and get bangs (side note: Germans call these “Pony” or “Ponys” and I think it’s the cutest thing ever). It’s a little more high maintenance, but a little change is always nice.
Another thing I made time for was cooking and preparing food. When I am busy/overwhelmed/stressed, that’s usually one of the first things to go, but I’m also trying to cut a lot of the crap out of my diet (because I LOVE desserts and other sweet things, but eating sugar makes me feel terrible/foggy/lethargic after). So I focused on making lots of delicious things to always have good, pre-made snacks and easily heated leftovers around the house. And of course it helped that the new Oh She Glows cookbook arrived in the mail in September, so I definitely was busy making soups and smoothies and breakfasts and a few other dishes.
And speaking of books, I definitely kept up with reading more, though I am still so behind on my goal that I’m not sure I can make it up. Here’s what I read:
“Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” -Roald Dahl
“Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman” -Lindy West
“Domain-Driven Design in PHP” -Carlos Buenosvinos, Christian Soronellas, Keyvan Akbary
“The Fishermen” -Chigozie Obioma
“The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo” -Amy Schumer
“Designing Conversational Interfaces” -Alper Çuğun