Ok, It’s time the non-descript picture of Berlin was moved and replaced by a mildly descriptive update of recent times.
I managed to snap the picture(s) of Berlin during my trip to the ALDE conference on the 18th-19th of October. I stayed for a few days after to see the ‘real’ Berlin and overall the trip was a chaotic mix of civilised liberal meetings and debaucherous liberal partying. I was accompanied on my flight to Berlin by a large number of UK porn stars and sex industry pros who where off to their own conference – the ‘erotic’ industry show held in Berlin over the same weekend. Unfortunately, I never got the chance to take up their invitation to party at the sexpo official hotel but, I’ve tried very hard to imagine what it was like. Instead I spent Thurdsday and Friday at the other end of the liberal-minded spectrum, in the company of political delegations from accross Europe and also managed to wrangle a free dinner in the Riechtag building which (many years ago) was the scene of a fire that led to emergency rule in Germany and the rise of Mr Hitler. I decided not to announce my manifesto just yet.
Thanks to Jen, a long lost travel buddy I met in Siauliai, Lithuania I spent the rest of the weekend soaking up the minimal sounds of Berlins most famous (infamous?) export – underground techno. The Golden Gate club was dirty, odd and fun enough to do Berlin’s reputation proud.
I made my flight home with just 1 minute to spare but, was too tired to speak to the porn delegation. What happened in th Estrel hotel will remain a mystery – it’s probably better that way. Berlin was good.
Since I’ve been back my bro turned 31, temporarily making him two years older than me (also good) but our plan to expand the Bearder dynasty has taken a server blow. The kind planning officer at Oxford city council as decided to reject our planning proposal and in doing so, ended any hope of convering our much loved garage into a much loved apartment. This is bad news but, at least it ends the waiting and allows us to concentrate of DIY skills elsewhere. No 33. is set for a makeover.
From here it’s pretty much good news all the way. Firstly, after years and years and years of tireless work and campaigning, the wise old political animal (aka Mum) made it to second place on the candidate selection list for the European Parliment with enough votes to replace the outgoing Baroness Emma Nicholson in the 2009 European elections. Then, not to be outdone – the wise old ‘animalist’ (Dad) has just been awarded the Queens Award for higher education for his hugely successful (and unique) Masters course in Primate Conservation. It’s an impressive honour, probably the highest level of recognition available in this land and, he gets to dine with HRH the Queen! Well done to them – I expect you’ll here more about it in the Christmas letter – afterall, Me Tim and Pete are running a little short on impressive achievements to boast about. ….just wait till we’re 60!
And that’s about it, all I have to do now is prepare for a weekend of fun with my Slovene visitor Marica and to invite you all to the single most important event of next year – my birthday…
Ladies and gentlemen, friends and family, hobbits and goblins…
The 5th February 2008 is not just my birthday – It’s also the day that Stuey Clarke has to pay-up my 20GBP prize money as I will have spent at least some of my 30 years in every country in Europe.
Therefore you are all invited to celebrate.
When? 31st January – 4th February 2008 (or a subset of)
Who with? Me and you and the Icelandic folk
Why? Cos it’ll be fun
OK, I know it’s expensive, dark and colder than Pingu’s fridge but, Icelands natural attractions include geysers, glaciers, lava mounds and waterfalls. It’s also one of the best places on earth to see the magical northern lights and the only place left in Europe to get some special Eddy lovin.
There’ll only be 3 hours of sunlight per day but that’s OK cos the rest of the time we can drink Viking amounts of beer and eat pickled Rams testicles.
Sound good? Then let me know and I’ll add you to the list of would-be warriors and I’ll update you when I have further info.
Your dear friend
Eddy (formally Mr Ian Bearder)
In the meantime I’ll let the following links to the talking…
Accomodation (from about £12 per person per night)