Ich liebe dich: The BvG and I

I love the BvG. Which is great, because the BvG’s logo is a heart and their slogan is “Weil wir lieben dich.” In German, that means “Because we love you.” So the feelings are mutual. What is the BvG, you ask? Oh, it’s the public transportation system in Berlin. S-Bahn (street trains), U-Bahn (the underground/subway), buses, and trams. See, it would be impossible to get around Berlin without the BvG. It is an efficient system, with a stop always within walking distance. The vinyl on the sunway seats is the perfect pattern that looks straight out of the 80’s or 90’s- colorful and absurd, not geometric in any form or fashion. 

I loved riding the trains, making quick connections, and then getting on an U-Bahn line you’ve never been on and realizing that the U-6 trains are brand new and way nicer than your line (the U-3), which is crazy and upsetting but kind of fun because hey, aren’t new trains fun? Your train has special duct tape on the seats that matches the vinyl so it almost blends in, and the screens don’t work so you have to actually pay attention to the announcer. 

I loved people watching on the train. One of my other favorite things about Berlin were the Spaties- convenience stores that were open late, sometimes 24 hours. People could, and almost everybody did, grab a beer from a Spatie and then walk around the city and talk. Who needs a bar, right? But in Berlin, lots of people drank on the train- they even have a name for it- a Wegbier. A beer for the way. I loved riding the train late at night with friends and then eventually splitting up. Even better were the times that I ran into people I knew- how coincidental that we are getting on the same train and they just happened to get into my compartment. I used to hate riding the train alone at night and then facing the walk home alone, but eventually I appreciated it. I loved the announcer, and I can do a pretty good impression of “Zuruck bleibe bitte.” 

I’ll miss the trains. We don’t really have public transportation here, or anywhere in the States really. I’m going to fall behind on all of my podcasts. But more than that, the trains gave me freedom to go anywhere and do anything and know that you’ll always be able to go back home. I think I’ll miss that most of all. 

Author: Riley L

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