City Lounge: Berlin (Book One, Chapter One: This is Emily)

City Lounge: Berlin

Chapter One: This Emily:


I opened the drapes in my bedroom window. I enjoyed the sight of Berlin in the morning. I have lived here for two years, but it still feels surreal. I came from San Francisco, California. When I was a little girl, I loved Germany. The history amazed me and the culture reminds me of my grandfather. Ever since I was twelve, I wanted to move to Germany. Grandma only enabled my love for Germany even further.

It looks warm today, maybe I should open the windows to let in the spring breeze. I started with the one I stood in front of. The sounds of the city below filled me with a delighted chill. Luckily, I don’t have to work today. I frowned as I came to a realization.What was I going to do today?

Okay, let me back up some.

My name is Emily Crawford. I live alone in a nice apartment in west Berlin. I came to Berlin, Germany when I was nineteen years old. At the time, I was working as an intern for Wings International in California. I was so happy when I was called to go work in the branch in Germany. I smiled as I remembered that day. Every six months, Wings International selects different interns to work overseas. I called my mom and my friends after my name was drawn. My friends gave a surprise going-away party. They took me out on the town for one night until two in the morning. Only my mother didn’t want me to go overseas.

“But you’ve never been overseas,” she told me as I packing up days before I left for Germany. “Why can’t you stay here?”

“I have to get out,” I said, stretching my neck. “I’m tired of life in California. I want to see my grandfather’s home.” I walked over to my closet and pulled out my favorite dress.

“Is that what you really want?” she asked.

“Yes, mom,” I told her. She rested her hands in her lap as she watched me pack.

“Just.. please be careful,” my mom said. I turned to her and breathed out.

“I will, I will,” I said.

“You promise to call me every day?”


My mom stood up and hugged me. I nervously chuckled as I hugged her back. Five days later, I boarded a plane and flew off to Berlin, Germany. Two years later, I am still in my happy place. My internship ends next year, but I am going to apply to stay in Germany permanently. I have been saving money and researching how to do so.

I looked out on the street as I thought about what I was going to do today. Since I have the day off, I could just stay in my pajamas, watch a movie or two… Ooo, I could start on that book that Wendy lent me last week. I keep meaning to do so, but work keeps getting in the way. She insisted that it wasn’t a problem for me to keep it out that long.

“Just be sure to give it back to me in good condition,” she told me yesterday on our lunch break. I still felt bad for keeping it out this long. I just never had the time. Maybe I will start reading today. I really don’t feel like going outside. To be honest, I wasn’t the type to go out on an adventure. I was more of homebody back in California and I still am on in Berlin. I didn’t even count on much excitement in my life. To be living in Berlin was enough for me. All I needed was the city that I had come to call home.

I stretched my arms above my head and walked over to my bathroom. Maybe some tea and some bread rolls with honey butter would sound like a good breakfast. As I got undressed and stepped into the shower, I planned out how my day off would go. Change into fresh pajamas. Breakfast would be tea and bread rolls with honey butter. Watch some TV and call for take-out for lunch. Play a little bit of the Beatles while I clean my apartment. Have some dinner. Start on that bed that Wendy lent me. Watch some TV and go to bed. I smiled to myself as I stood in the shower.

This is going to be a perfect day.

When I got out of the shower, my cell phone rang. I ran over and picked it up. I didn’t recognize the number. It couldn’t be mom; she only called when it was noon here. I swiped left and put my phone to ear.

“Hello?” I asked.

“Em?” a woman with an Australian accent asked on the other line. “Is that you?” I fell on my butt on the bedroom floor with my jaw dropped.

“No way…” I murmured.

“Hello? Hello?” the woman asked.

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