Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Day Twelve - Behind The Wall

Do you ever have one of those “oh my god” moment where it all just comes together. Yesterday we wandered around and got a half assed view of how things were when the wall was still standing. Today we did one of the best tours I have ever come across which not only gave me a complete view of how it was but also answered all the where what’s and why's as well.

The guide was actually present during the war, first as a member of the English army but then as a British Liason Officer who’s main job was to gain intelligence in a covert fashion. He told the most amazing stories about how he would go behind the wall for days at a time gathering information and just how difficult it was to assimilate with the Eastern Germans. He told us stories about escapes from the wall and all the while we walked the length of the wall and saw first hand how things had changed before and after the wall had gone up and also now that we wall has been torn down.

There are still sections of the wall throughout the city and its amazing because they even run through major office buildings. Both sides of the wall hated it and the graffiti and damage to the wall was almost insane.

Did you know there were ghost railway stations? Did you know that the Soviets were so clever they put the wall (barbed wire to start with) up between midnight at six in the morning… 127km’s of barrier done in a matter of hours. Did you know that days before the wall went up one fifth of the East German population defected … one fifth … far out.

It was a 4 hour tour that overran to six hours. It was so interesting the day flew by and I was so impressed not only with the information given but the manor the information was presented I cant begin to tell you how much you have to do this tour if you ever happen to be in Berlin.

So now my feet are tired yet again, my head is full and I'm going to go and try and pack to make tomorrow easier.

Oh yes and my favorite saying for today is “All German’s have a little policeman trying to get out”

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