no more keeping my feet on the ground

Berlin Tip: Lisboa Bar am Boxi

Lisboa Bar am Boxi

Whether you want to start the day with a Bica along with some delicious sweets or want to enjoy a nice Portuguese dinner and a bottle of Port wine, Lisboa Bar am Boxi is a great choice for it. It is located in the hearth of Friedrichshain, if you circle around in Boxhagener Platz you surely won’t miss it. During the summer you’ll find tables in front of the restaurant filled with locals, relaxing, chatting with friends and enjoying their coffee. Inside you will discover a living piece of Portugal: hand carved furniture, wooden cases of wine, azulejos and lots of corks. You can probably spend hours there just glancing at the walls, every time discovering some other fascinating detail. All these details, together with the dim light create the perfect atmosphere for a relaxing dinner with friends. Needless to say, the food is absolutely divine, and the prices are also pretty good: you can choose from a broad variety of tapas starting at 2.90 Euros each, or get a freshly baked bolo de arroz, or a pastel de nata at 1.50 Euros. For a complete dinner with drinks and desert expect to spend about 20-25 Euros.

Open every day, from 12 to 22
Krossener Str. 20, 10245 Berlin
Google Maps

The Survival Guide for Your First Flight with Ryanair

After 3 flights with Ryanair you return home a changed person. Just like all the Ryanair reviews say it, yes, you will make it safely from A to B, but that’s pretty much all that can be said about the experience. Nothing else is included in the price and you will notice this, it may even bother you, especially if you’ve spent your whole life flying around with Lufthansa, AirBerlin, Austrian Airlines etc. and board with high expectations.  Here are a few tips to make the most out of your flight with Ryanair and arrive at your destination without any surprises. Continue reading

Summer in Berlin: Open Air Cinema at Reichstag

Even when you think it’s a dull day in Berlin, with unending showers, and no movement on the streets, all you have to do is go out for a walk, and you’ll come across something out of the ordinary for sure.  That’s just how the city is, there’s always some exhibition to go to, some Messe to meet friends at, some concert to attend or some new restaurant waiting to be discovered.

Last evening we took a walk along the Reichstagufer, who would have imagined what we’d find there: on one side of the river the Marie-Elisabeth-Lüders-Haus, covered in fragmented projections depicting a documentary about the history of the Reichstag, on the other side of the river people sitting on stairs and enjoying the show. Really nice atmosphere,  next time you don’t know what to do in Berlin, grab same friends, some beer and enjoy a summer evening on the river bank. :-)

The documentary runs between 29.06.- 03.10.2015, twice every evening, starting at 20:30. Entry is free. You can read more about it here.

Open air cinema at Reichstag, Berlin

Open air cinema at Reichstag, Berlin

Culinary Adventures: Casa Marlindo in Porto

We spent the last night in Lisbon wandering the streets, trying to tick few more things off our must see list. At about 2am we revisited miradouro de São Pedro de Alcântara, where two nights before we had discovered a cheerful band of trumpeters playing songs of Fanfara Ciocârlia. At about 6am we began packing. At 7:40 we were running through the airport, fearing not to miss our flight (or maybe the contrary). Past 8am we said goodbye to Lisbon, and one hour later hello to Porto.

Porto, Portugal

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10 Things Your Portuguese Teacher Won’t Tell You About Lisbon

After studying your language and history for over 3 years, we finally meet, I greeted Lisbon from the airplane window. I know about all your Afonsos, Herniques, and all your mighty sailors. I’ve learnt to twist verbs through all the conjunctives, and combine them in próclises, ênclises and, most difficult of all, mesóclises. I can manage reading Portuguese texts and, If I’m not shy, I can even say a few words. Based on this, I expected to find in Lisbon a familiar language spread across hills, castles and old houses, all carrying the smell of fish. Besides my teacher I hadn’t met anyone from Portugal, and even though she talked about the city quite a few times, very little stuck with me. Here are a few things a language class won’t tell you about a Lisbon.

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Linguistic curiosities: eight – night

English eight night
French huit nuit
German acht Nacht
Spanish ocho noche
Italian otto notte
Portuguese oito noite
Swedish åtta natt
Latin octo nox / noctem
Greek οκτώ (októ) nύχτα (núchta)
Romanian opt noapte
Albanian tetë natë
Hindi आठ (aath) रात (raat)
Sanskrit अष्ट (aṣta) अक्ता (aktā)

Nobody has come up with an explanation for this bizarre chain of similarities, and there’s not a lot of scientific literature on this matter either. Yet the internet is full of speculation. Some say it’s a plain coincidence. Another theory sees the similarity between the two words as a characteristic shared among Indo-European languages. From the constructed PIE roots okto (eight) and nekwt (night), the two words probably emerged later in Proto-Germanic languages as ahto and nakht, and in Latin as octo and nox/noctem… and from here on forming all the variations listed above. Yet each rule comes with its exceptions: as you can see, Lithuanian, Russian and many other Slavic languages are not on the list. If we proceed to the next number after eight, we find a new peculiarity: Continue reading

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