Tuesday, November 14, 2006

"Die Mauer wird zerissen!"

Here are pictures where I don't care about their artistic value. They capture a moment, a mood bygum!, a joy and optimism and potential energy the likes of which I doubt I'll ever feel again in my lifetime. When I was in the cafeteria at school and my German-American friend (who had family in the East) was rushing out of the cafeteria and shouted to me "Komm schnell! Die Mauer wird zerissen..." (Come quickly! The Wall is being torn down...")

What friggin wall? I thought he meant one of the ivy covered granite ones at school. I got a hamburger. I found him in the lounge. Jesus, I've never had a grin like that.

A couple of weeks later I got a letter from an exchange student from Germany my family had hosted. She had stood on the wall, she was going to go to University in Berlin, "you have no idea" she said, "what it is like."

These pictures recall all those moments, and the next year, too, when I went to Germany and had East German classmates, when I danced at a club in Weimar, when I drank with a couple of Ossis about to lose their jobs. It was an amazing time, and feels even more miraculous in retrospect. The wall coming down. The wall coming down.