Robert Hampton

Another visitor! Stay a while… stay forever!

19th June 2012

DDR you having a laugh?
Posted by at 10.49pm | Out and About | No responses

DDR Museum EntranceAs mentioned previously, Andrew and I had a couple of hours to kill between buying our Fernsehturm ticket and actually being admitted to the tower.

Luckily, just around the corner is another attraction, the DDR Museum, dedicated to all things East German and packed with artefacts from the 51 year history of the Deutsche Demokratische Republik. We dutifully rolled up at the entrance and paid our €6 entry fee.

Life in East Germany wasn’t exactly a bowl of Kirschen. Democracy was non-existent, the state infringed onto most aspects of people’s lives, the press was dominated by Government propaganda and the Stasi would round up anyone whose political attitudes were “incorrect”. Nevertheless, there is a certain level of rose-tinted “Ostalgia” for the old days. The DDR museum caters to that, although it doesn’t gloss over the less savoury aspects either.

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16th June 2012

Posted by at 5.23pm | Out and About | 1 response

Berlin FernsehturmIt’s hard to miss the Berlin Fernsehturm.

This striking piece of Communist architecture dominates the landscape in Berlin. It is 368 metres tall, making it the fourth tallest freestanding structure in Europe, just behind the Riga TV Tower and just ahead of Greg Davies.

It’s a long-standing joke that in films set in Paris, the Eiffel Tower moves around to be in the background of every scene. A similar comment could be made about the Fernsehturm and Berlin, but this time I think the effect is real.

When looking through my holiday snaps, it was amazing how many times the tower appeared in the background, even if I hadn’t noticed it at the time.

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