Flashes — I

I’m at the Berlin Hauptbahnhof tonight.

I’m slouched in front of the (shut) Starbucks leaning on my grey-and-green backpack with other broke and eager travellers for company, trying to use their WiFi to book my hostel in Amsterdam where the train from here in twenty minutes is going to take me. I’m going to walk into a train coach that has a middle-aged woman and two college kids, and then hit my head against the glass door on my way to the loo, but I don’t know that yet.

Right now, I’m on WiFi, negotiating. On the surface - with the hostel owner to give me better rates, with the friend I’m meeting tomorrow on which train he’s taking; but my mind is playing its own games. My subconscious is giving me 10 days that I have left on the trip, 10 days to find all the answers, 10 days to undo all that needs to be undone, 10 days to start afresh. I will go to Amsterdam and see the church tower Anne Frank used to see everyday and write about in her diary, I will take the standard pictures on its very beautiful bridges, I will spend 45 minutes listening to my Dutch friend talk about the social life of her guinea pig, but I don’t know that yet.

It’s 11:45 and I’m sleepy as I’m numb from the visit to the Sachsenhausen memorial earlier today. “Is this the concentration camp?” I had asked the guy in charge of the audio guides at the entrance. “No, this is the *memorial* to the concentration camp that was here 70 years ago”. No shit, Sherlock.

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