Come December, I know that after the slog of the next few weeks, I'll be needing a break. I booked some time off work accordingly, after which it was a case of wondering where to go.
I had a number of ideas, but I wasn't sure.
I was musing on this - and many other things besides - one day last week as I walked a wayward route home from work. There'd been a lot for me to take in that day as regards work, most of it positive: potential, planned developments which may mean that I'm able to head in more of a creative direction and which would possibly formalise my role in that respect.
I sat discussing this on the phone with a colleague as I sat having some food in a waterside cafe, after which I embarked on what became quite a long (two hours) but lovely walk home: I took a turning away from the familiar route and along a road which skirted the university grounds.
It was truly autumn at its best, the russet of the leaves contrasting with the extensive grassland: the trees and various other flora simultaneously masking and adding a decorative flourish to the stately buildings, the latter's neo-classical stylings already beginning to dissolve gracefully into silhouette against the late afternoon sky.
It reminded me of my many wanderings around and beyond Museuminsel, Unter den Linden and other such places besides and beyond. I felt a hankering, but wouldn't it be a little too safe to head back to what now feels like familiar territory? Wouldn't it be worth being more adventurous, throwing caution to the wind and heading off to somewhere I've never been before?
I was weighing this up as I continued on my walk, the urge to broaden my horizons battling for space with the urge to renew my acquaintance with a place I already know and love. Just round the corner from home, I crossed the road and squeezed through the gap between two parked cars to get onto the pavement. I happened to look down at one of the cars. Berlingo was the name/brand of the car.
That decided it - well why not? - and I booked my flights and accommodation the following evening.
Sure, it is familiar territory, but it will be the first time I will have headed overseas and been on my own for the duration of the holiday. I believe it will stand me in good stead for a couple of further, more adventurous trips I intend to take next year.
Anyway, I hope I shall enjoy what Berlin has to offer in early December.