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Beauty, Ugliness and a New World

I truly didn’t think I’d ever say this but I have taken up running.  I live right next to a park and three mornings a week (not too early of course!) you can find me doing my rounds.

Wow, there is a whole world out there I never knew about!  Any time of day, there are LOTS of people out running in the park.  In fact, you feel a bit odd just walking.  But still, suddenly being one of those running myself feels somehow different!  Almost like being in a parallel universe, a different world, in the same place. Silly, I know.

A couple of things really helped me in this new venture.  1) my ipod.  Combined with 2) my favourite BBC podcasts Witness, Outlook and From Our Own Correspondent.  They help me forget that I am aching and out of breath!  And without this website: fourweekstoonemile, a couch potato like me would never have lasted past day 1!

So about the beauty, the ugliness and the pictures at the top.  In the park, there are these gorgeous flower beds, so beautiful and really well looked after.  And there are these park benches full of graffiti, and the bins that most of the time are completely overflowing.  What’s going on???  Like most of Berlin, Wilmersdorf (the district I live in) is pretty broke.  So there is no money in the budget to empty the bins regularly enough.  No idea where the money comes from to pay the gardeners but I am SO glad it’s there somewhere!

As for wildlife, I am thankful (and somewhat surprised) that I have as yet not encountered a rat.  Only a few mice, lots of sparrows, and some very cute rabbits.

Back to beauty.  This is a house I pass as I walk home:

How can a Hydrangea thrive like this on a first floor balcony???  Amazing!

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Purely for my entertainment, maybe

So this sign is on the stairs as you enter my building.

I am just waiting for someone to take off their dirty shoes, get out some wet wipes and carefully clean their feet, before putting their shoes back on (remember, they’re dirty!).  And then walking up the stairs, leaving marks on every step.

Silly, I know.  But it makes me smile, even on a wet and cold July day.  That has to be good!