A long night

A brief mention of the cultural activities that I've been partaking in here for you guys. Back when I was in Berlin last year (!), I got the chance to take part in the Long Night of the museums and go around and look at massive temples shoehorned into smaller buildings. It's a bit like an Escher illustration really - I walked in expecting to find another building within that building settled at the top of the bottom of a set of stairs. Anyway, what was most interesting about the Lange Nacht in Berlin was that it was freezing cold, and it provided a free nights entertainment while I pretended to look all cultured. However, I've got to say that the most interesting exhibition I went to in Berlin was a Kubrik one.

Actually, the most interesting place that I went to in Berlin was an abandoned building which had been taken over by artists known as the Tacheles squat. I went there late at night with Martin and Mel, and it had a fantastic atmosphere about it. It's only appropriate then that I trekked up to Mannheim to go to the Lange Nacht this year. Although I love Heidelberg, the thought of hanging around the packing museum didn't sound too enticing (If you want to know about packaging, just by a Mac).

I'm pretty glad I went up there, as I got to see some very cool exhibitions. The first one we stumbled into was an artist's studio, which had been opened up and had a jazz band playing in it. Any time anyone sings "Light my Fire" in a bossa or jazz style - I just have to stop and listen. We followed that up by going down to the catacombs to check out an exhibition on cover art. Probably not that interesting really, but there were some classic bad vinyl covers (Battlefield Earth soundtrack).

The next stop however, was the jewel in the evening. The Schloss in Mannheim had a series of exhibits set up inside the rooms within the castle. So what you ended up having was a mix between ancient (or at least really old) architecture and modern exhibits. Things like exhibits on the Turkish influences in Mannheim (set up to look like a bazaar), or audiovisual presentations with images of tranquil gardens interrupted by IC trains roaring past. It was a very well presented set of exhibits, and I felt some relief that there's room for material like this in towns as small as Mannheim, and that it is in fact relatively mainstream.

It's actually getting warmer here. The snow I think has finally stopped, and now we're getting rain. According to my little weather widget, it's due to hit 19 degrees by the weekend. I don't know if that's going to happen, but I'm gunning for not using my thermal clothes at all in April.

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