When I travel, I like to share my journey as it happens via my social media platforms. I am in Berlin, Germany, and you can follow my hashtag #GGTinBerlin on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook to see my updates as I live tweet them. You can also follow #wkndBLN to get the media group’s shares and experiences via social media.
I often hold off on sharing the overall experience, but decided it might also be nice to share a thought or two of my immediate first impression. We all arrive to new places with pre-conceived notions, lack of knowledge, and some generalizations. No matter how intellectual we may think ourselves to be, we’ve all been influenced by messages and imageries and information that is often further influenced by whatever culture we grew up in.
As a woman of color and an American, the list of ways in which information on Germany has influenced my thinking is long. But I am also a traveler and lover of the world, and coming here has been an exciting opportunity for discovery.
My first impressions of Berlin has been a bit overwhelming because I was concerned that maybe, possibly, acceptance would be a problem. I was worried, a tad, that maybe I would be confronted with some polite resistance towards my presence.
I can’t speak for all of Germany and its level of diversity and acceptance of the same, but what I can say about Berlin so far is how pleasantly surprised, relieved, and delighted I have been about their acceptance of not only me, but of so many others regardless of race, sexual orientation, and religion (though according to the Berliners I have spoken to thus far, Berlin is neither very religious, nor conservative).
My first impression of Berlin has left me feeling less scared of its past and more in love with its present. It has also been a wonderful reminder of the importance of giving ourself a chance to discover something personally, so that we can come to our own conclusions about the things, people, and places.
Excited for the days I still have left to discover here.
I explored Berlin’s Street Art scene and loved it!
I went out of the big city and toured Leipzig.
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Disclosure: This visit was courtesy of guest of Berlin Tourism. I received no compensation. All opinions expressed here are my own.