After crashing in Berlin  after the Depeche Mode concert on wednesday I had a short drive through Berlin, and then decided to start heading home again. In my previous car-trips to and from Berlin I noticed the very striking borderpost at Marienborn , and on this trip I actually saw that there was some kind of memorial/museum there , so on the trip back from Berlin I decided to exit the autobahn and have a look there, to see what it was like, and also to get some pictures of this very foreign looking environment. The area covering the Marienborn border control is quite large, and signs with descriptions and stories can be found all over the area. Sadly the signs were in quite bad shape, with the letters barely readable, and naturally, only in german. I did manage to get some shots of the buildings , and some of the machinary used back then… interesting.

Check out the album  

Trip to Berlin — Depeche Mode @ Waldbuhne

So yesterday  morning I left for a short trip to Berlin, to go and see Depeche Mode at the Waldbuhne. Starting with a high-speed drive to berlin (and I fear I might have gotten a speeding ticket in Bad Oeynhousen) I arrived at the hotel at about 15:00… after checking in I did a quick visit of Alexanderplatz where the only available parking-places had interesting signs. It was pretty clear the Fifa championship was going on in Germany :). The Waldbuhne was right next to the Olympic Stadium (glockenturm) where the soccer championship was also going on. Quite a queue was forming in front of the gates, and the baggage-checking went really slow (no camera’s and no more then 1/2 liter of soft-drink allowed). We managed to slip in with all our camera’s stuffed down our pants and some social-engineering/distraction techniques and proceded down to the arena for some almost front-row places. While waiting the almost 2 hours for the pre-show to begin we met some very friendly people and had a couple of very expensive beers (5 euro’s for 0.3 liters) in Depeche Mode cups. The opening act consisted of Goldfrapp, and while I really like Goldfrapp, this didn’t ring any bells, there was no singer, just two guys with powerbooks . They did manage to mix some Depeche Mode sounds into their tunes, but it’s not the Goldfrapp I know and like . After 30 minutes of this the well-known pre-show mix started again, and we knew we were in for a 45 minute wait for the main show to start. It actually took even longer this time, as the pre-show mix just looped and started playing again for a few minutes before the band actually got on stage. The concert itself was great, as usual, with all the favorites coming by. The setlist was slightly different, and shorter it seems, compared to the concert at Ahoy.

Some more good shots include:

Depeche Mode Open Air — Berlin 2006

N invited me to Depeche Mode’s Open Air concert in the Berliner Waldbuhne this wednesday, which I gladly accepted. So after arranging 2 days off from work I could confirm and make all the required arrangments. The concert will be given on a beautiful location (google-maps) just outside of the center of Berlin. I’m currently trying to book a room in my usual Berlin hotel, lets hope they have some available.

I might as well visit some shops before I leave there… must make a wish-list 😉

Update june 27: Ok… everything is arranged, i’m leaving tomorrow morning which should give me enough time to drive to Berlin, check into my hotel, fix some food and then drive back out of the city towards the stadium. Thursday I plan to do some shopping… not sure yet where exactly, at the very least at Alexanderplz or Hackischer Markt.

Darwin Awards Prospective Candidate reports (dutch) the following (roughly translated)

New driver causes chaos,

Rotterdam, june 22, 2006

A 27 year old inhabitant of Rotterdam who had recently received his drivers license has had to give it back. He’s been charged with attempted homicide and has been hospitalized after wrecking his car.

The police checked the driver wednesday night, and found out he had been drinking. His drivers license was taken, and he received a 12 hour driving ban. Shortly after the police caught him driving again, and ignoring a stop-sign he fled the cops. Running many red lights, using bike-paths and nearly ramming a police-vehicule he finally hit a curb and crashed into a lamppost. The fire-department had to free the man from his toppled over car.

Somehow this doesn’t strike me as particularly intelligent… besides just getting his driver’s license at the ripe age of 27, drinking and driving isn’t particularly smart. Driving again after getting held up by the police is really dumb, and then trying to escape is outright stupid, especially while drunk and an unexperienced driver.

I’m sure we’ll hear more from this prospect in the coming years… let’s just hope he kills himself before he kills a more intelligent person with his antics. 

Gnarls Barkley — Crazy

Gnarls Barkley — Crazy performed live on MTV’s Video Music Awards… nice

YouTube link

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And the normal video-clip (mp4 video) 

Gotan Project – Diferente

Just heard this great song on kinkfm , I’m now checking out the rest of the album, lets hope it’s as good as this one 🙂

It’s very smooth and relaxing latin… kinda like Thievery Corporation

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Snow Weekend in Belgium

Last weekend my company organised  a weekend trip to Belgium. We stayed in the Kempen area, north of Hasselt. Willow and I arrived friday evening. Many of my collegues were already on-site, and we had pizza’s in the campgrounds pizzaria. We found out we shared a cabin with Thomas and Marlijne and a new collegue Ben, and his girlfriend Saskia. On saturday and sunday a large group of collegues when for the local airport for flying lessons in ultralights and chessna’s, but we decided to visit Hasselt for some shopping and hanging around. On sunday we played a few rounds of paintball and when quadding on a circuit. Especially the quadding was really rough, and kept me feeling all the muscles in my legs, arms and back for two days ;).

On monday we visited Maasmechelen village, Maastricht and Cadier en Keer, but it being a national holiday, everything accept for the bars and restaurants was closed. In the afternoon we drove back to Willow’s place.

Pictures made by willow can be found on her blog, while my own pictures can be found on my gallery site (password available on request)

Camera Japan — Drive — SABU

Yesterday evening Wi11ow and I went to the movie ‘Drive‘, shot from the moviewhich was playing in the Amsterdam Melkweg , as part of the Camera Japan filmfestival . The movie is about a rather preculiar man and a group of bankrobbers who happen to storm into his car and kidnap him. The leader of the bankrobbers has taken off with the money, leaving his mates behind. They hop into the nearest car and tell the driver to ‘follow that car’ 😉

However, the driver of this car is a rather interesting man, following all traffic-rules too the letter, never speeding above 40, waiting for every traffic-light, and not making illegal turns. This drives the bankrobbers mad, as they quickly loose track of their leader.

The remainder of the movie describes the weird situations the various robbers get into, how their lives change in interesting ways after meeting the driver. The movie has great humor and imagery, and I recommend everyone interested in alterative foreign movies to take a look. During the next week it’ll play in The Hague and Rotterdam, so check out for more info.