When was the last time you flexed your argumentation skills in an intellectual debate? If it’s been a while since you put your opinions to the test, head down to Drive. Volkswagen Group Forum next Thursday night (20.9.2018) for round #5 of Cliché Bashing. This debate series sees moderators Sissy Metzschke and Volker Wieprecht take on some of society’s thorniest issues, together with experts and the audience. The topic this round is “I’m (Im)perfect” — Take It Easy Girl vs. Multitasking Woman”. That’s to say, the pressure experienced by women to multitask their way to perfection in all areas of life — from building a career to raising a family and being the perfect partner. Where does this come from? Who’s perpetuating it? And how can we alleviate this oppressive double standard? These are amongst the questions that will be picked apart by a panel including mixed martial arts fighter Julia Dorny, actor and moderator Alina Merkau and founder of Yogibar, Helen Meyer. Naturally, the event welcomes all genders — round up your favorite conversationalists and register here for what promises to be a thought-provoking evening. (Text: Anna Dorothea Ker / Photos: c/o Drive. Volkswagen Group Forum)
Whether or not you made the most of the lakes this summer, it’s not too late to take the joys (and benefits) of swimming inside at one of Berlin’s many magnificent public pools. One of the city’s oldest and most spectacular is Stadtbad Mitte ”James Simon”. Built in 1929 by the Weimar Republic’s prolific architect Heinrich Tessenow, and funded by the entrepreneur James Simon, it was considered to be the most state of the art bathing house in Europe at the time. Now a listed building, it has been beautifully maintained and fitted out with modern showering facilities and refurbished changing rooms. The main attraction of the seven-floor building is without a doubt the impressive swimming hall, which features rows of paneled windows that stretch almost the entire lengths of the 10m high walls and even across the ceiling. Go on a sunny day and witness the light flooding in as you submerge yourself in the shimmering waters of the sunken 50m pool. If you’re not a swimmer but still intrigued, two private gym studios overlooking the pool offer regular yoga courses, and there’s even a massage parlor if you feel like really indulging. (Text: Lucy Thorpe / Photos: c/o Stadtbad Mitte)
For the month of September, Floating University is inviting Berliners to feed their curiosity and fill their minds with knowledge — all whilst enjoying the water. This temporary university was erected in early 2018 in a rainwater basin near Tempelhofer Feld. The goal is to reflect and share new perspectives on urban life, creating a forum for students, teachers, artists, architects and urban planners to discuss their views and opinions in an academic setting. During the university’s open weeks (starting today, 30.8.2018) – the general public is welcome to participate in the program lineup — which includes workshops like “Hot Terms”, in exploration of a new urban vocabulary (4.8.-9.9.2018, 11-17h). Or simply swing by to check out the university site — which is worth a visit in its own right, consisting of several platforms raised over the middle of the basin — and enjoy a drink at the student-run bar while you’re there. (Text: Jennifer Prietzel / Photos: Victoria Tomaschko c/o Floating University)
A small cottage, a lake and a pier. That’s all you need for a relaxing getaway to Brandenburg. I’d long had my eye on Haus Silke am See, a Scandinavian-style vacation home painted in a soft red and located lakeside at Zemminsee. This summer, the wait was finally over and we arrived at the property in Groß Köris with great excitement. We were delighted by the variety of activities available — you can explore all the nature Dahme-Spreewald has to offer with the house’s very own bikes, the fishing boat down by the water or one of the kayaks. Silke Kettelhake, who lovingly renovated the house in 2008, recommends the lakes Tonsee and Groß Rosskardtsee with its crystal-clear water. Unwind after a day of activities on the wooden pier among billowing reeds and buzzing dragonflies, dipping your toes into the water before heating up the barbecue at sunset and lounging on the garden swing. The terrace in front of the house is an inviting spot for taking an aperitif while enjoying a view of the lake and listening to owls hooting. The cottage accommodates up to four people; a baby cot is available upon request. My advice is: Book early! (Text: Ann-Katrin Seibel / Photos: Ann-Katrin Seibel, Haus Silke am See)
Ann-Katrin Seibel came to Berlin in 2011 and now lives in Friedenau with her husband and son. On her blog, she writes about life as a mom and introduces her favorite Berlin breakfast spots, great travel destinations, and interior styling ideas.
The challenges of integrating into a new country, city and community are manifold — not the least of which is mobility. To help make this element more accessible in Berlin, specialized bicycle workshop Rückenwind (meaning “tailwind”) opened in Neukölln in 2015 to provide bicycles to those who have had to flee their countries, so that they can easily get around their new home — and meet Berliners along the way. On Mondays to Wednesdays, one volunteer and one refugee meet to select and repair a bike together. The project not only promotes mobility and integration, but also makes a contribution in terms of sustainability, as the bicycles are usually assembled from donated frames and parts that would otherwise no longer be used. On Fridays, Rückenwind opens its doors to become a DIY repair shop: for a small donation, you can use the tools on site to work on your own bike, and for more difficult jobs, a skilled mechanic or a refugee who has been trained by Rückenwind will be happy to assist. (Text: Lisa Staub / Photos: Rückenwind)
Bike repair shop: Mon-Wed 16-20h, DIY session: Fri 16-20h
Volunteers and donations are always welcome; find out more