Saturday, November 08, 2014

Saturday: 25 Years On

Tomorrow marks the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.  From an AP article in the Sacramento Bee:
Germany on Sunday celebrates the 25th anniversary of the night the Berlin Wall fell, a pivotal moment in the collapse of communism and the start of the country's emergence as the major power at the heart of Europe.

A 15-kilometer (nine-mile) chain of lighted balloons along the former border will be released into the air early Sunday evening — around the time on Nov. 9, 1989 when a garbled announcement by a senior communist official set off the chain of events that brought down the Cold War's most potent symbol.
And here's a flavor of what that lighted balloon memorial looks like:

Read more here:

I remember the fall of the Berlin Wall quite well; the news reports were both stunning and riveting.  That grotesque edifice had been in place all of my adult life and I'd never even dreamed about seeing it come down in my lifetime, and yet it did.  Thank God.


  1. I grew up with the Berlin Wall as a constant. I actually stood next to it on a trip to Germany with my parents when I was about 12. And then, wonder of wonders, I got to piss on a piece of it when I was in my 40's (a casino in Las Vegas - The Station Casino, downtown - bought some pieces of it for publicity and put them IN THE URINALS. Loved that.)

    1. I can barely remember the wall going up even though I was 16 when construction began. I never made it to Berlin when I lived in Europe, but I sure WANTED to go. (sigh) Yet another missed opportunity.

  2. I missed the construction because I was cloistered at NTC San Diego.
    It wasn't quite like prison because I went voluntarily.
    But they dressed us all alike, fed us in humongous dining rooms, and made us march everywhere in a group.
    We maybe saw a newspaper on Sunday . . .or when Mom wrapped the cookies she mailed in the sports page.
    My biggest concern that summer was if I was going to pass the bag layout inspection.

    1. It wasn't quite like prison because I went voluntarily.

      Heh. I can relate to that.

  3. I grew up in West Berlin (1980-1989), with the Wall a constant in my life. One of my mom's cousins on the East side lived really close to us as the crow flies, and I had no idea until after the wall came down and we could just drive down the street a couple miles and turn the corner and there he was! No more long trips through checkpoints and having the car searched and stuff. No more my mom making me smuggle 15 pairs of really cheap underwear from East Berlin to West Berlin by wearing them all, one on top of the other, underneath my dress. Talk about TERRIFYING for a little kid! I was sure I'd be caught and sent to prison (or worse)...
    The horrible thing for me is that I reported for AF basic training THREE FUCKING DAYS before the wall came down. I missed the most epic party on the planet. *sigh* I do have a couple chunks of the wall, though. My Oma (German grandma) lived in an apartment complex right next to the wall, and when I visited in 1990 there were still plenty of sections of the wall in the woods that hadn't been completely dismantled.

    1. Wow... lots there I didn't know about you, Christina. And missing the party? OMG. That's HORRIBLE!


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