Whoa…Wouter and me got up at 3:45 am today, after sleeping little less than 3 hours. This due to the fact that yesterday we scheduled in a little poker night at my place and the previous plans to go to bed early that night, did not really succeed. Anyway, after the obligatory tooth brushing we stepped into the car and were on our way Düsseldorf Weeze Airport, because tonight we’re going to attend the “20 years of Sudden Infant” party in Berlin!
Yes, our friend Joke Lanz has been performing under the “Sudden Infant” moniker for 20 years now, and he is going to celebrate this anniversary by hosting a mini-festival at the Ausland venue in Berlin. We are so much looking forward to this that the lack of sleep is almost forgotten when we cruise down the empty Dutch highways.
Around 5:45 am we arrive at Weeze, so just in time for our flight that leaves at 6:30. Why so early? Well, it was the cheapest way… Upon touching our seats in the plane we fall asleep, not waking up again before we arrive at Berlin Schönefeld: first power nap of the day! Brrr… we were hoping for some good weather but instead Berlin is cold and grey. Whatever. We head into town and take the U-Bahn to Rathaus Neukölnn, where we take a little walk and find us a place to have some breakfast.
It’s after nine now and still we have a long day ahead of us. After breakfast we go out for a walk and make a phone call to our friend Christoph “Kakawaka” Petermann with whom we make a date for noon at Hermannplatz. Inbetween we nourish some Turkish tea at a place nearby the former “O Tannenbaum” and enjoy Berlin a bit further. I don’t know what it is exactly, but I feel so at home every time that I’m here. This city seems to be so alive and vibrant, and you walk into another world with every block that you cross. Bliss around every corner.
With Christoph we go to a bar, where he once met up with John “Massaccesi” Fanning. The latter apparently enjoyed this bar so much, which made us eager to go there as well! We talk about renting rooms in Berlin, since Wouter is planning to move there later this year. We have lunch, say goodbye to Christoph and walk on to the new Staalplaat store for our date with Rinus van Alebeek. Staalplaat moved places this weekend and will re-open in about a week, hence the endless boxes of cd’s and lp’s scattered all over the place. Rinus is going to start a coffee corner in the back of the building and that’s where we meet and have a… beer. After updating each other of the latest developments we have a second power nap that day. Two hours later we join Rinus to his apartment where he treats us on some excellent bread with exquisite herring in a dille sauce: very yummy! Around 8 pm we leave him so that he can watch “Germany’s next Topmodel” and head for the “20 years of Sudden Infant” party! Yay!
When we arrive at the Ausland, we meet Joke in the doorway and he greats us with “Tilburg is in the house!” which makes us feel very welcome. The place is already pretty packed and among them we see many familiar faces, which in effect builds up to the “feeling at home in Berlin” vibe. I guess at its peak there where about 150 people in there, and with them we enjoy some excellent performances by a.o. Dick Tourette, Family Battle Snake and Raionbashi. But highlight of evening was without a doubt Joke’s performance together with his son Celeste: blowing on whistles while playfully (and in turns) carrying each other on the back and stumbling through the audience (and at the same time a soundcollage was playing in the background). An emotional and magical moment! The overall atmosphere and the organization of the night was great by the way, and I guess some photos and videos will pop up somewhere soon, because everything was well documented. Around 4 am we say goodbye to Joke and start our trip back to the airport. Before we get on the U-Bahn we have a falafel at one of the many places that are open 24-7 and contemplate back on a crazy but great day in Berlin. Our plane will leave at 8.