Tag Archives: Nudity

A visit to a German sauna – a treat for ball enthusiasts

As experiences go, it’s pretty hard to top riding around the centre of Berlin in a bed. But luckily, I didn’t have to trouble my brain cells for too long as my English friend, Cecil, was coming to town. Cecil, the big perv German culture vulture had decided that he would like to go to a German sauna while he was here and who was I to refuse? OK, so I’d spent four years in Latvia refusing to go to saunas, but it seemed it was finally time to grow some balls and go be around complete strangers’ balls – an inevitable moment in every young woman’s life.

As I glumly regretted the Apfelstrudel, cookies, chocolate brownie, crisps and packet of Jaffa Cakes I’d eaten that week, Cecil dived into the naked corners of the internet. While I was grunting through a few half-hearted sit-ups and butt-lifting exercises, Cecil gleefully resurfaced with the new gem on the Berlin spa scene – Vabali, a 20,000 square metre, Balinese nudist colony in the heart of the city.

Having thought that my sauna adventure would consist of sloooooooooooooooooowly walking to a sauna, dropping towel and hastily exiting again four seconds or so later, this was not exactly good news. A quick look at the website revealed that the spa is open from 10am to midnight daily, and that the minimum amount of time even a chicken-shit Irish girl can spend there is two hours… Brilliant.

Trying to cheer myself up with the fact that at least I hadn’t had to fork out cash for a new bikini, I met Cecil at his hotel. As we walked to the car park to pick up his rental, Cecil had a moment of unparalleled genius while waiting for the green man:

“What’s that noise for? So deaf people know when to cross?”

Possibly in a bid to show that his driving skills were sharper than his medical knowledge, Cecil expertly manoeuvred the car out of the parking space and towards the exit. However, when we reached it, it was clear that he should have paid upstairs. Waving apologetically (and a bit Mr. Beanily) at the car waiting behind us, Cecil reversed, angled, and parked the car around 50 metres from the entrance. This left me in the enviable position of being face-to-face with all of the happy drivers who had to swerve around our car on their way in. Cecil took off at a run to the first floor machine, which was out of order, then to the second floor, where the machine worked, then clattered back down the roundy rampy thing in his sensible, English shoes. Really, it’s lucky I have a sense of humour…

We finally made it the spa where my humour and “naked spa” German failed me. We checked in (in jittery English), got our little watch things that would calculate our bill as we sauntered round in the buff, collected some towels and made our way to the changing rooms.

The walk of doom.
The walk of doom.

I took off my dress and bra and then Cecil took the piss out of me for wrapping my towel around myself to take off my tights and knickers. The rules, which had been explained to us at reception, were that you had to be naked when using the pools, saunas, and pretty much everything else, but wear a towel or robe while walking from one place to the next. With everything safely deposited in our lockers, it was time to go. I fervently wished I’d given some thought as to how to stash a bottle of whiskey in a towel before arriving.

Holding onto that towel for dear life.
Holding onto that towel for dear life.

First on the agenda was a small heated jacuzzi. I dropped my towel and ran down the steps like a woman possessed. But once I was in the water, I actually started to relax. This wasn’t so bad! Everyone was naked – nobody was looking at me or judging my Apfelstrudel consumption habits; everyone was just chilling out (naked) and having a good time. The people there ranged from 18 to 80, with the dangly bits to match, so I really didn’t feel like I had anything to hide.

This place was amazing! (Image taken from the Vabali website)
This place was amazing! (Image taken from the Vabali website)

I emerged from the pool (think of Halle Berry in that James Bond movie…) dried off a bit, and we hit a sauna. Stretched out on a bench, naked as the day I was born, all I felt was a refreshing sense of freedom – oh, and bloody hot. After all that sweating, I felt like we’d earned a glass of wine so off to the bar we went. Amazingly for the last day of October, it was still warm enough to sit outside in just a towel. The sun shone, the birds sang, I drank my wine and tried not to look at the massive balls of the man sitting at the next table with his legs coquettishly spread. This was bliss.

If you get a bit chilly, you can always warm up in here. (Image taken from the Vabali website)
If you get a bit chilly, you can always warm up in here. (Image taken from the Vabali website)

We giggled our way through saunas, massage areas, swimming pools, rest areas with water beds, and more wine, until we came to two rectangular, side-by-side, knee-deep pools of water with smooth round stones at the bottom.

Me: Hmm.

Cecil: Go on.

Me: Hmm.

As the water was only knee-deep, I figured I could leave my towel on for this one but, for some reason, Cecil was insistent I take it off… I tentatively dipped a toe in the first pool – OK, that was pleasant. I sloshed through and up the steps at the other end. I did my toe-dipping thing in the second pool and jumped about a foot in the air. The water was FREEZING.

Me: NO, NO, NO! NEIN!! It’s bloody freezing in there! 

As I tried to back backwards and Cecil pushed me forwards, you could probably hear me guffawing in actual Bali. Some Germans even stopped to watch the show, laughing almost as much as I was. I charged through the water, bits bouncing, and emerged triumphantly shivering on the other side to greet my new-found audience.

All in all, it was a great day and if you have to get your bits out in public, I highly recommend doing it in Vabali.

Disclaimer: Not everyone who comes to visit me will get to see me naked, so don’t get any ideas.

Neighbours, everybody needs good neighbours…

Having German neighbours is great. Everyone says hello, people hold the door open for you, and they even buzz you into the building at 3am when you can’t find your key.

However, before you decide you want to move in with me, there are a few things that you should probably be aware of.

1. Germans love online shopping.

I mean they REALLY love it. Which is all well and good, unless you live in the ground floor apartment and the DHL guy always rings your buzzer first. I have worn a path in the carpet trotting from my desk to open the door and sign for people’s packages. Half the time, our hall looks like the back room of a post office with all of the packages we take in.

The tip of the iceberg
The tip of the iceberg

There’s still no rest when delivery time is over for the day, because then you’re up and down to open the door to people looking for their stuff.

2. Naked neighbours

While I don’t think I’ve taken in any packages for the couple next door, I’ve seen the boyfriend’s package more times than I care to admit. Not that I’ve been going out of my way to see it, of course.

They have no curtains on their living room window and sometimes things get a bit sexy in there. They also both like walking around naked or standing at the sink naked, something that nearly gave my Bavarian flatmate a heart attack.

And, at the risk of going a little off topic, I think they might have murdered their cat. They had the cutest little kitten that used to leap out at you from all sorts of hiding places, but seemingly also liked peeing and pooping in the bed. Then one day it was gone.

Me: Hey, I haven’t seen your cat around for a few days. 

Traute: He ran away.

Me: Aw, well, maybe he’ll come back.

Traute: No, he’s not coming back.

Me: Right…

Then the next day, they put all the cat’s stuff in the bins. I could be wrong of course, but it does give you paws for thought… (Sorry.)

3. A hit on the house

One day, I came home to find two Xs spray painted onto the front door.

Like this
Like this

I didn’t give it much thought until one of my neighbours put up a sign on the inside of the door a day later.

Like this
Like this

It turns out that the two Xs are Berlin Criminal Underworld-ese for “There’s good stuff in this building. Rob it.” Thankfully, one of my neighbours understands BCU-ese and responded with the sign that means “The police have been made aware of this situation. Don’t even think about it. Punk.”

After an attempted break-in last week, Hildeberta, my flatmate, suggested that maybe I could sit inside the door and bark for a while in the evenings. She did not get a “hoch fünf” for that.

4. Chatty Kathy

I guess every building has one of these. You know, the type that’s into everyone’s business and is almost impossible to escape when you bump into them in the hall? Mine also happens to look a bit like Kathy Bates in “Misery”.

misery_1

 

In our first conversation, she explained how she couldn’t understand why everyone thinks Berlin is cool and Berliners are friendly, as supposedly, Berliners are the least friendly people on the planet. She then told me she is a Berliner and proceeded to talk the ear off me for a good twenty minutes.

As she lives on the fifth floor, she’s worried that nobody will hear her scream (unlikely) if someone breaks into her apartment. She’s also worried that, as you can’t text the police in Berlin, the intruder will be able to hear her on the phone. So now she has my phone number.

The idea is that she’ll text me in the event of a break-in, and then I’ll call the police. Why she took the number of the one person in the building who can’t speak German is a mystery.

Heinz: Hallo, Polizei.

Me: HILFE! HILFE! EIN MANN IST… UM… UM… JUST HILFE! 

You see the flaw in the plan.

Crap, my phone is ringing – private number. I guess it’s time to let a neighbour get murdered. Sigh. I hate when this happens.

 

(Kathy Bates image taken from here.)