Berlin BerMuDa Weekend – Day 3

After only a few hours sleep, our room woke at about 1pm on Sunday. Our flight wasn’t til 10pm so we had some time to kill. There was nothing I wanted to do more than return to Berghain for one last rave and a chance to send off a really memorable weekend in the only way that felt fitting.

Unfortunately when it comes to Berghain, having been permitted entry on the Friday actually means nothing the next time you try. Even if you get everything right and tick all the unknown boxes of Sven and his small army of guardsmen, I would guess there is only a slightly better than 50% chance you will find yourself back on that glorious dancefloor. Regardless of the odds, we were definitely going to give it another shot.

If I had been desperate to get in on the Friday, then there is no word for how badly I wanted to get in on Sunday. Perhaps it was the fact that the rest of the weekend had literally been perfect down to a T. I couldn’t and wouldn’t have changed a single detail and it just seemed like almost too much to ask for, to have this final bit of good fortune. We walked the correct way this time and it was only ten minutes from the hostel. I admit I was feeling a little bit silly for it taking us 25 minutes on the Friday. This time there was no queue, just two groups of people who were being admitted as we walked down the daunting metal-fenced path towards the door.

Sven wasn’t there this time but that didn’t mean the policy was any less strict. I wasn’t sure if it was a good or bad sign that we had just seen two groups be successful, especially since I’d heard it was already fairly full in there, which actually it is known to be all weekend every week for that matter. As we approached the door we were stopped once again and looked up and down slowly. The bouncer stared directly into my eyes and I held his gaze as confidently as possible, which probably looked about as confident as an unarmed civilian would if you were staring at him down the barrel of a shotgun. With a shrug that seemed to say ‘whatever, I am indifferent to your presence on this planet’, we were allowed inside once again, and it was very hard to not break out a smile as we were searched, reminded that cameras were not allowed, and again paid the 8 euros entry fee. A bargain by anyone’s standards.

As we entered the main room I noticed two things. Firstly, the speakers were definitely louder and the bass even more aggressive than on the Friday and secondly the crowd were even weirder. It was perfect. The dark rooms were open this time but unfortunately the ice cream parlour was still shut. We grabbed a round of techno juice and joined the other few guys on the dance floor who had been there an hour or so.

I don’t think I stopped smiling for the next three hours. Sunday raving is very different to a Friday or Saturday night. Sundays are supposed to be a day for sitting on the couch watching football or generally taking it easy before the working weeks starts again. We couldn’t have been further from the thoughts of the daily grind or any stresses that we had left back at home. There is a great sense of of fulfillment in making the absolute most of a weekend and not wasting a second.

The drinks continued to flow and we spent the first hour or so downstairs in the main room. The music was ever harder and darker than it had been on Friday. The bass was pounding more than ever and it was impossible not to get completely caught up in it. This was techno, real techno. In its natural habitat, where it felt most comfortable. Plus on a Sunday afternoon you knew that these were the people who really appreciated it and the atmosphere that this created was so rare and so powerful that as I looked around our group, techno juices in hand, music far too loud to communicate properly with words, the smiles on people’s faces and the looks in their eyes were enough to be certain that we were nearing the end to the best weekend any of us had ever had.

After a break on one of the balconies to recap on some of the weekend and double check what time we had to leave to ensure we didn’t risk missing our flights, we spent a little time in Panorama Bar where the music was once again a little more upbeat and perfect for what we were all in the mood for.

7pm rolled around far too quickly and darkness had descended upon Berlin. It also meant it was time for us to say our final farewell and head back to the hostel to grab our bags. I couldn’t resist buying one more souvenir on the way out, this time I went for the Berghain branded beanie hat. The walk back down the entrance queue towards the taxi stand was probably the only sad moment of the entire weekend but it was only for all the right reasons.

The group all regathered at the hostel and we headed back to the airport to say our goodbyes, grab a much needed Burger King, and board our flight back to Stanstead. The flight home was predictably a lot less energetic than the flight on Friday evening, which seemed like so long ago. As the rest of the group pulled hoods over their heads and put sunglasses on to keep the light out of their weary eyes, in an attempt to catch an hour or so sleep, I couldn’t help but be amused. No one could say we hadn’t given it 110% and in return Berlin had definitely matched our efforts. If you haven’t been, go. If you have been, go again. At the risk of being a horrendous cliché, for us, it definitely wasn’t goodbye but with absolute certainty we were simply saying see you later.

It might take a few days to recover but I will be seeing you again soon on the dancefloor.

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