Clubbing in Berlin

Despite the fact that we live in a city renowned for its clubbing scene, the Bavarian and I hardly ever bother.

Thank god that Berghain has just this week fallen off the top ten list of best clubs in the world to place no. 13, so now when people ask us how come we’ve never been, we can wave a casual arm and say, “Oh the Berghain is so passé…”

There are many, good reasons we stay home and dance around the living room instead of going out: we have a good stereo and all the music we like, we can get drunk on better quality alcohol and for cheaper, we can fall straight into bed once we’ve had enough, we’re married and not getting younger…

However last night we broke the rule and went to Cassiopeia. It seemed like a good idea when we planned it – who can resist old school hip hop – but as the date approached, the thought of leaving home at 10 p.m., then going for drinks for over two hours, then making our way to the club – because of course there’s no point in arriving before 12.30 a.m – made us anxious in a way Mickey Flanagan describes below:

However, once we were out, it was all okay – we even had fun. The Bavarian, who is absolutely a morning person, was a bit confused at some of the sights Friedrichshain had to offer at night; “Why is that man reading Karl Marx outside a bar at midnight?” “Why have so many people got beards?” “Why are those people climbing up the side of that building?” “But seriously, that guy, reading Marx – is he really reading, or is he just posing?” “Do you think anyone’s ever stood outside a bar in Friedrichshain and read Adam Smith’s ‘Wealth of Nations’?”

And then, at three o’clock in the morning, when we were leaving the club, a new mystery presented itself – people were queuing, actually queuing, to get in: “Why is everyone going in now?” “What have they been doing thus far?” “How long are they going to stay out for if they’re just getting here now?” “Aren’t they tired?” “Don’t they want to go sleeping?”

Now I know that three o’clock is a ridiculous time to leave a club, but I can’t help it – where I come from, clubs used to wind down around three, and you found yourself on the pavement by four, so I’ve been pre-conditioned stop dancing and start making my way home between those hours. I even dragged the Bavarian home at four on our wedding night (ignoring pleas of “but I like this song!”) while our friends continued celebrating till breakfast.

Leaving early, however, does have its benefits – when the Bavarian wakes up at seven a.m. in his usual chirpy mood, which he is bound to do no matter what time he went to bed, it’s just about tolerable. Any less sleep, and I would have had a problem with him singing Wir Feiern Die Ganze Nacht at the top of his lungs in the shower this morning. Which makes me think, maybe we should start going to clubs first thing in the morning – after all, they run continually from Friday evening till Monday morning in this city. People coming out of the club would be as awed by us as we were by the people going into the club when we were leaving last night – and to top it off, I’d have the Bavarian by my side, who is so energetic in the mornings that everyone would wonder what rock n’roll cocktail of drugs could produce such a high…

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