Sunday, November 15, 2009

When will we fall?

I never went to Berlin when the wall was up. I only crossed the Iron Curtain once, when I was in Hungary in 1982, and the boundary was a lot easier to cross than it had been. In my friend's village he had a reel-to-reel tape recorder with a tape that his friend had sent him - he'd taken it to an English teacher because he couldn't understand it - she couldn't understand it either. It was the Sex Pistols. I told him what they were saying - when they got to Holidays in the Sun with the line "I'm looking over the wall and they're looking at me" he said he'd been in East Berlin and gone to the place where West Berliners could look into the East - Brandenburg Gate? - and he stood looking back at them too.
"When will we fall?" - Back in 1977, even as late as 1989 we thought that we'd be the ones to fall, the wall would be up forever, or the world would end in a nuclear war.