Well, two weeks in another town. More specifically, in my case, nine and a half months in another town, and now it's over. I've still got a week to go, but tomorrow i go to Munich for the IFTR (International Federation of Theater Research) Conference.
It's too soon to tell, but what did i learn from my experiences in Berlin? One thing is that i do not like solitary confinement; i do like having people around, i am very much a social animal, i've been used to having someone else there, ever since i was born. I don't make friends easily, i am not one of those gregarious happy people. And i tend to be very focused, but if my focus dovetails with other people's foci, then i'm fine.
I'll just give a run-down of this week. On Tuesday, there was the last session that i'll ever attend at the International Research Center: Zvika Serper talked about Japanese culture in terms of "interweaving" but he also discussed his training in Japanese classical theater traditions: No, Kabuki, Kyogen. Actually, this was quite fascinating; he discussed the Suzuki Method, and explained how there is no "method" in most Japanese traditional theater, the traditions were handed down from generation to generation but in the 20th Century this changed when the idea of dynastic families changed.
Then i had to meet about some university business.
Then i had dinner with Robin and Hannes. Very pleasant, at a place called Felix Austria.
Wednesday was the Center's Summer Party, a Barbeque in the Garden. The highlight was when the kids and staff (Armin, Claudia, Holger, Johanna and Silvia) performed. That was a lot of fun. I talked mostly with Gabriele Brandstetter, Franz Anton Cramer, Ludger Orlock, and Lina Saneh. I had a good time.
On Thursday, i went to the "Head" Exhibit at G11 Gallery, which is located in this abandoned wreck of a factory building on Landsberger Allee; it's one of those buyildings that's almost like a squat, but it's an artists' building. Theer are at least two galleries there, as well as several studios. Some artists are even living in the building. Baerbel had some pieces in the "Head" show; she's a sculptor, and her work is very good. She works in stone, and has a very secure touch in handling her materials. She was describing her method, how she likes to take the time to sand the stones, so that there is a really tactile sense. Then we went to have lunch. Well, i had lunch, she just wanted something to drink (juice). And we talked about the Berlin art scene. And that was really enjoyable, because a lot of my perceptions are the same as her experiences, and she's been in Berlin for four years.
When i got home, "Les Demoiselles de Rochefort" was on TFV, in the original French (with German subtitles). But it was letterboxed and it was lovely to see.
Friday, i handed in my keys. Nobody was around, but i said goodbye to Claudia; she is the new financial manager/administrator (she's been working at the Center since February).
Later, i met my friend Karen for dinner, at a South African restaurant; then we walked around Prenzlauer Berg. But our discussion centered on what "home" is: Karen is one of those people who has lived in a lot of places for extended periods of time (two years in Poland, almost as long in China, a period in India, and so on) whereas i'm someone who has basically stayed in New York City my whole life. So this Berlin adventure was a novelty for me, and i have no way to assess it.
On Saturday, i did my "dry-run" to the Hauptbahnhof, since i'll need to go there on Monday to catch my train to Munich. Turns out that i can take the Ubahn and then change for the Sbahn; altogether, it takes about 45 minutes.
Today, i was going to Potsdamer Platz, but the U2 wasn't running for a stretch; you had to take a bus. So i decided to skip it. Then i had dinner with Timothy.
And now i did the laundry (for the last time) and started packing and started throwing out a lot of the papers i collected. Now it's time to sleep. Tomorrow is another day....