This week, I’m writing in response to the question, “Have you met any interesting locals? If yes, what were they like? If no, how do you hope to engage within the local community?”
Although they may not be locals, my seven roommates with whom I share the apartment for Estrel apprentices have all lived in Berlin for at least two years now. Six of them are originally from the Ukraine, and one is from Syria (I’m not including their names for privacy reasons).
All of my roommates are extremely nice. They’ve also all helped me to adjust to living here in various ways. For example, embarrassingly enough, I needed help figuring out how to use the washing machine here (because it’s so different from the ones in the US) and one of my roommates was super awesome and not only explained it to me, but let me use his laundry detergent for the first week.
On Saturday, it was one of my other roommate’s birthday (I’ll refer to him as “M”). M is the roommate from Syria, and he held a party that he said followed the traditional guidelines of the town he comes from. That is, he made over eight desserts that we all indulged in over the course of the day – eating an aromatic parsley salad in between courses as a palate cleanser. It was some of the best dessert I’ve ever eaten, and perhaps the fullest I’ve ever felt in my entire life haha.
I can’t wait to learn more about/spend more time with my new roommates in the weeks to come!