Trip Start Sep 28, 2011
333Trip End Ongoing
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It's not long before I've made new hostel buddies sitting in the roasting sun in the beer garden. We're then accosted by a smelly man speaking absolute nonsense while trying to steal my just about empty bottle of beer. I suppose I should explain that this is a normal practice in this city. If Berliners return bottles to recycling outlets, they receive 8 cents for their trouble. Please don't be shocked (as I was) when I saw a young, well dressed man shining his smart phone in a bin to find glass bottles. Back home you'd expect an unwashed crack addict doing the same to find a used cigarrette butt. Only without the smart phone obviously. Unless it was stolen. Or bought from Cash Converters. Anyway for the vast majority of residents, it's possible to make a fair amount of extra income on the side by recycling bottles. I've actually heard of one woman who has begun a small operation whereby she earns over a grand a month just scavenging for glass. Fair play to her.
I've ended up not capable of going out as I started drinking far too early. I need to adjust my body clock to these European countries. Nobody is in a club until 2 and 3am. I'm in bed by 11.