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The start of the fall of the Berlin Wall

funkiestginger's memory of 9th November 1989

My family and i lived in Germany for five years whilst my father was in the RAF. One weekend my parents decided to take my sisters and i away in the caravan to Berlin again. This was to be our second visit to the city. The day that the wall started to come down we had spent in East Berlin, visiting the local sights. Mid-afternoon we came back through Checkpoint Charlie and there wasn't the usual stop and search type methods with hours of looking through my father's military papers, which was very unusual. We were waved through and noticed a commotion actually on the west side of the wall so we stopped. People were chipping parts of the wall away as souveniers (as we did too!) and making a large hole in the wall so that the Grepo (East German wall police) could come through the wall onto the west side. We have pictures of my sisters who were 4/5 at the time and i (i was 8) sitting on the back of one of the Grepo's motorbikes and other pictures of them holding my sister's and dancing around. We stayed there until very late - it was a very magical atmosphere. Although i didn't really understand why the wall was there until much later when i learnt about it in history, i knew that many people had died trying to get over the wall or through the checkpoints. It was only a few months before this time that someone had died trying to get across. I feel i am so lucky to have been there that day - it was purely coincidental that we were there. If i see film footage of that time in Berlin then i will watch very carefully to see if my family or i are on it, dancing on top of the wall in front of the Brandenburg Gate!

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