Berlin is an interesting city, site of so much history, and a divided island in the East for over 40 years.
In the month leading up to Christmas, towns all over Germany have Christmas markets in public squares. Stalls sell all manner of food, drink and gifts. Two of the more traditional Germanic items are Gluwein, warm mulled wine, and Kartoffelpuffen, potato pancakes.
Sometimes it can be more difficult to find vegetarian meals in foreign countries, particularly when there is a significant language barrier. I found it hard to read menus but once we found something it was frequently delicious. A simple pasta dish without sausage was excellent and currywurst made with seitan allowed a hint of the local cuisine otherwise unaccessible.
Fast train service makes it easy to get around without an automobile. Heading west to Braunschweig took just an hour and a half. Vehicles are generally much smaller; hardly any pickup trucks and SUVs are to be seen while cars similar in size to the Mini predominate.
We spent the weekend in Braunschweig, my mom's hometown. My first cousins once removed hosted us in the family home they own, built by my great grandparents in the 1930s.