By: Alexis Smiley Smith
Illustration: Allis Bergstrand
As a human growing up in a household with little or no control over its chaotic contents, I evolved into quite the control freak myself- the queen of the grasp, the clutch, the manipulation. Monitoring the way my partner cleaned the sink, only to do it ‘right’ after they left the room. I am a hover agent, a wasp with rules. I can even control the tone and timbre of the air in a room I enter. I am so tightly wound; I wake up with my hands in fists. It’s exhausting to be in charge.
Berlin is the perfect collage of a city to look, to be a searcher or a seeker. I came here four years ago as an act of some version of faith. A fool at the edge of a cliff, armed with a writer’s mind and maybe a little talent, but certainly not prepared for the labyrinth the city is…a twist of turns and tunnels, dark corners and millions of endings and beginnings.
Berlin was the perfect place to embrace my old patterns of finding any sweet deliverance into a loss of control through drugs and partying. But this methodology…so tired. So tired of this easy fix. I wanted something else.