My self portrait
My self-portrait is a rock that I found at the location below. We pass by this art piece every day on our way to the Warschauer Strasse train station. I choose the rock as my self-portrait for 5 reasons; even know I’d rather have 6 (since it´s a six sided rock). 1. When I think of this rock, I think of the streets in Europe. I think of how every old street is made of rocks like this one. When I think of these streets, I think of walking and exploring. I think of Janet, who loves to walk. I think of Helmut, our 70 year old tour guide, who walks everywhere. I think of walking by myself in Berlin. I think of walking with the group. I think about how my favorite way to explore Berlin is by walking. 2. When I think of this rock, which was once part of the side walk that we walked on every day, I think of all the people who have walked on it before me. Berlin has a long and fascinating history, which is especially visible through the bullet holes in old buildings and the stark architectural differences between the East and West. I can´t help but wonder what this rock´s history is, and who else I share this rock´s history in common with. 3. When I think of this rock, I think of how it was once part of the uneven and rocky sidewalk. I think of how many times I tripped and stumbled on these rocks while in Berlin. When I think of stumbling, I think of my two favorite experiences in Berlin that I just happened to stumble upon (both of which I blogged about). First, the graffiti park I stumbled upon with Stuart, which included many restaurants, cafes, a rock climbing station, a club and a market. Second, the Wasser Gallerie, which Teryn and I stumbled upon while looking for the Neue National Gallerie. 4. When I think of this rock, I think of the location I found it at (the art piece below). I think of how Berlin has managed to make art out of everything (like these boxes). I think of the new posters, posted daily about art exhibits, concerts, and things to do. I think generally of Berlin´s thriving arts and culture scene. 5. When I think of this rock, and our self-portrait assignment, I think how I can manage to make this rock look like me? ( I always seem to take assignments literally at first). I think, should I draw some blond hair on it? A face? However, as time goes on and the more I think about my rock and my reasons for identifying with it, I realize I don’t need to do anything to this rock to make it look like me. I realize that by simply leaving it as it is, and by accepting it, we resemble each other. What I mean is that Berlin accepts me, the same way as I accept this rock—just the way it is. You see, everything goes in this city, which is very different from all the other German cities I´ve been too. Berlin reminds me of a bigger and more liberal Ann Arbor. There is no typical Berliner, at least not what I observed. People from all over the world come to live here. I heard somewhere that ¼ of Berlin´s population are foreigners. This being said, I really feel accepted in Berlin. Despite my American accent, people always respond to me in German and I even get asked for directions here. Anyways, there you have it—my 5 reasons for identifying with this rock. Actually, I´ll be a little corny and say that my 6th reason for choosing this rock is that this trip truly did, ROCK.