Category Archives: Coffee

My take on poetry: Tranquility and Chaos

Tranquility and Chaos

 

The sound of silence

Captured in monochromic rainbows

A constant urge to create unplanned spontaneity

reflected in

truth-bearing lies in a

one-dimensional sphere of deep

impressions

 

Insipid coffee beans

arranged;

seemingly at random on a surface-free mirror

 

Edentulous smiles on oddly drawn souls

covered in yesterday’s wisdom

Memories of tomorrow’s instability of change

Fresh smell of old habits

viewed by

uncoordinated emotions

renewed on a cloudy battlefield of

hope

and unverified assumptions

 

Ill-natured sovereignty, expressed in closed

yet talking eyes

 

Disturbed heartbeat

beat

for

[…]

for

beat

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Zagreb: Ideas and Images

A firm handshake, 1 second, 2 seconds. Eye contact. Straight. Sincere. Little blinking, every now and then. The coffee arrives on the table. The usual glass of cold water as well. You light a cigarette with a match. Inhale.  Breathe out in the clear summer air. Sunglasses disturb your vision, do not use them. The book is almost over, you read it for weeks and weeks now. Clearly. It looks like being tossed around too often. You like that idea. Smile secretly. A smile. The most honest thing one has to offer. You take a sip of water, while letting the spoon find its way to the bottom of the coffee. A small pack of sugar accompanies your cup. Do not open it. Coffee wants to be pure. The cigarette in the ashtray keeps burning down. You take a hasty pull and start reading. Lose yourself in a book. Trams keep speeding by, so do people. You look up, once in a while. People change. Your coffee gets cold. You still drink it. Cold coffee: a metaphor for time leaps on rusty chairs in moments of pure alienation. Detached from notions.


Croatian Coffee – A love story

Bok! Daj me jedna bijela kava, molim.

That is how it all began. The wish for a normal coffee with milk. What I got was the invite to stay several hours, sip your coffee every now and then and just see “being”.
Drinking coffee in Zagreb has become a wonderful tradition of an almost daily routine, involving working on my thesis (wi-fi is widely spread), reading a book and continuously improving my language skills. But all this I could do back home in Germany too. Here, it is a different feeling….coffee. It means so much more.

My day starts with making a strong coffee in one of the Balkans (some might claim Turkish) cezve. Boiling water, adding some sugar, adding the coffee, letting it boil just another second. Taking it off the stove, letting it rest for a moment – truly the most authentic coffee I have every tasted. And yet I am far from mastering this technique.
Hence my frequent visits to decent cafés like Funk Club or Melin.

Some of the “best” poems I wrote in the past few weeks were created under the influence of strong coffee and comfy chairs, mixed with an unstoppable amount of inspirations walking the streets and, of course, cigarettes.


Tartu for 2 days: An alternative tourguide

Here is what you should do, when all over sudden you discover 2 free days in your schedule and you happen to be somewhat close: Visit Tartu! Plenty of books describe plenty of things to do, see, buy, eat… But only a truely young student who is doing his ERASMUS in that city can tell you the truth! So listen and listen carefully…

Dependent on your budget, get a fancy hotel or a less fancy hostel. Hotel Dorpat is highly recommended, with a breath-taking breakfast, decent rooms and with an amazing view at the river. In case of less money, get yourself a hostel room at Raatuse 22, this happens to be the place I currently stay (yes, we have a hostel in the dorm! We also have a sports bar and a driving school…).

Well, fresh up a little, we are going for a walk! We shall start at the Raekoja plats (town hall square), where all the nice little cafés are located. Passing it on the right side, we stand at the beginning of the Toome Hill. Have a walk! Especially in early autumn, when the leaves keep falling and the sun shines its last hours of the year, then having a long walk through the hill of Tartu might even be inspiring. Various monuments, some cafés and of course the Tartu cathedral welcome you!

After you finished your highly exhausting walk (about 1 hour) step down and find your way trough the Ülikooli street towards the Ülikool Tartu (the university – for reasons beyond my understanding situated in the “university street 🙂 ) Have a look inside! You may find yourself buying a ticket for a classical concert in the main hall or, due to lack of alternatives, just walk around. The building looks very impressive from the outside but the inside can easily be covered in 12 minutes. Step out again! Turn right! Head for café Werner – without any doubts the best in town, in Estonia, probably even in the entire Baltic Sea Region! Sit down, order a coffee (or 2, or 3) and try every sort of cake they offer – every singe one! It is worth it. The restaurant upstairs is less favourable. To have a decent dinner, either go to Pierre or Volga. Fair prices for good food in a warm atmospheres. Not recommended for Vegetarians (nothing in Tartu is much recommended for my people! The national/regional cuisine is really dependent on meat and fish), but a wide range of traditional Estonian/Georgian/Russian food is available. You will need it for the night. The nights are what makes Tartu the most interesting town in the entire country! Start your night with a decent housebeer at Püssirohukelder, preferable on a Monday, because then you might see crazy Estonians doing Estonian karaoke versions of popular songs. The housebeer costs 28eek per litre (that equals 1,80€ for a litre!). Don’t stay too long…

Next, hit the Illegard. Three beer = 80eek. Great deal. A much better deal is the five hotshots = 100eek. A hotshot is a drink consisting of espresso, Galliano and cream. Drink 1 (maximum 2!), leave the premise. It is time for Genialistide Klubi. Now it has an entrance fee of 5oeek, but when you make it at the right night, you won’t regret it. It welcomes the most interesting bands that come to town, have decent reggae parties and even a smoking room (a smoking room!). Hold your position for about 2 hours, than make your way to Zavood – the holy Zavood! End the night in Zavood, that is the only place to do so. Drink a “Funny Suicide”, have a plastic beer outside the ally and meet (weird) locals. Actually all those who got me “inspired” about my “Talking Politics” post some weeks ago I have met in Zavood. Leave when it starts raining (and believe me, it will start raining). Grab a bite to eat on the way home. Take-aways offer the cheapest alternatives at night, such as wraps, burger or onion rings. Sleep well – but not too long! See, if you sleep to long in Tartu, especially during the long, cold winter (September – June) you are running risk of missing the daylight for quite some time. After yet another breakfast, take on your good shoes, we are going for a walk. Destination: Supilinn. Within meters away from both Zavood and Genialistide Klubi you find the poorest area in the city but also the most interesting one. Old wooden houses from the 19th century present themselves in only a few streets which are named after vegetables, indicating that Supilinn used to be a place for “ordinary people”. Afterwards, have a coffee/tea in the Ülikooli Kohvik situated next to the main university building. Of course you can also return to Werner and try yet another mouth-watering cake 😀   The art museum (Tartu Kunstimuuseum) at Raekoja plats 18 offers a compact overview about current and recent Estonian painters and costs only 35eek entrance.  For the evening, I suggest eating out at either Pierre, Volga or Café Noir, all within minutes away from the theatre. The theatre? Yes, the theatre! The Vanemuine theatre at Vanemuise 6 hosts latest adaptations of plays to more than moderate prices. After the play, conclude the night with a walk along the river Emajõgi and finally fall asleep in whatever place you have booked in.

If you would come right now, the following images might be waiting for you…


Arrival in Riga, Latvia: Hot, sweaty but boy, what a coffee!

Just landed in Riga, Latvia from where my journey to Estonia will continue. In Bremen, I had to pay the ridiculous amount of 50,00€ for the 6 kilograms I had packed extra 🙂 Flight was easy-going and now I am waiting inside the airport for my 12 o´clock coach towards Tallinn, Estonia`s sparkling capital, which will hold the title “European Capital of Culture” in 2011. In Tallinn I am planning to stay for two nights, eventually watching semi-pro European football and getting used to the country, culture and language.

But right now, I am simply enjoying a good mug of coffee, purchased with an excitingly new currencies (which name I have already forgotten!)

Update 1: Got on the coach at the bus station. Included in the fare is a bottle of water and studentu brokastis!

Update 2: Despite only being applicable to the taxis, but I feel quite “home” already: They have yellow license plates…

Update 3: Crossed the Latvian-Estonian border some minutes ago! Estonian border control checked our passports, so business as usual!