"Coffee-to-go", in: SITE, 15.2005
I often wonder about the reason for the clusters of pharmacies and bakeries found in some neighbourhoods of Berlin. Or coffee shops all now offering coffee-to-go. Within less than a hundred meters of the intersection Leipzigerstrasse and Friedrichstrasse there are seven such places. Is there logic at work here that I cannot grasp? Some kind of Berlin idiosyncrasy, still valid after the disappearance of two exceptional systems? Further in the direction of Checkpoint Charlie, two houses down from our house on the Mauerstrasse (a name refering to the no longer extant city wall), the British Bookshop used to be located. It was a real oasis for me. Nevertheless, its relative lack of customers was worrying, and a few years ago it closed. Coach tourists and film crews dont buy books it appears. The peculiar character of life in this area had taken its toll, in association with the Internet. The space was empty for a long time, but now it is occupied again. Its become a showroom for minimalistic vitrines and display cases. How sad.