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We'll take Berlin: My lockdown in a city for young and elder alike

Isabel Healy chose to self isolate in the German capital when Europe's borders were shut down, and this 'over-70' is as happy there as Matt Damon in Dalkey

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Berlin and the River Spree

Berlin and the River Spree

Berlin postcard

Berlin postcard

Flutgraben Canal in Berlin

Flutgraben Canal in Berlin

Isabel at Gross Glienicke

Isabel at Gross Glienicke

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Berlin and the River Spree

Covid-19 in a beautiful Berlin spring has been this closet introvert's dream. The lockdown has changed almost everything in the world, has devastated families and how we think about our politicians, homes, communities and close relationships.

However, emerging from two months of lockdown here, I feel a real, deep, genuine affection for Berlin and Angela Merkel. The message 'you're in safe hands', Angela Merkel's campaign posters in the 2017 Federal elections for German Chancellor, showed only her clasped hands. Germans call her mutti - mother. The people trust her and we trust the health system. Angela, a scientist, has been vigilant, strong and decisive. As an elder, and over 70, I never felt bullied, disrespected or "frail and vulnerable". Angela is 65. Leo is 41.

Berlin is nine times the size of Paris, but at 3,562,000, the population, from 180 different countries, is just a million more. A total of 44pc of Berlin's urban space is made up of green areas, forests, lakes and waterways. The canals are still used to transport building materials and with 2,500 public parks and recreations spaces, democratic, enlightened use is made of the waterside.