Schonleinstrasse, Kreutzberg: It’s such a gorgeous day, every man and his dog is out in the sunshine. I went for a random wander and found a canal lined with wistful weeping willows. I followed the canal and stumbled into a huge Turkish market just off Kottbusser Damm. Assault and battery on the ears. Suddenly out of nowhere I was stuck in a pramjam. Hundreds (well, tens) of Turkish women wielding wheely trolleys covered in plaid did battle with highly determined single mums and their prams. I was caught in the middle. I tried to go around the outside but a grandmother with a moustache cut me off by running over my foot with her shopping.
I fully intended to buy nothing and just walk through the chaos. Flip-screen transition to me at home surrounded by shopping bags:
One gozleme with spinach and cheese. ‘Apetit auf gozleme?’ read the sign. One punnet of strawberries, mediocre quality, stupidly purchased from the first stall I saw, schoolboy error on my part. Half a kilo of green grapes. A tub of small sticky honey drenched Turkish sweets. Six yellow bananas – the salesman brazenly short-changed me a euro, and when I asked for it, handed it over without the slightest hint of shame. A block of Franzosische (French) fetta. Three firm avocados. A bag of ruccola – even though I’ve bought it, I’m not entirely sure what it is, and look on it with some suspicion. A bag of black kalamatta olives and a large green papaya. A small block of superbly aged English chedder sold to me by a grizzled man who is now trapped here by the cloud of volcanic ash from Iceland. Whole thing cost me fouteen euros.