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The only photo that survived more than four decades is this one of a friend and I in front of Munich's famous 16th century Hofbrauhaus where beer is served in litre mugs and enjoyed in the boisterous din of drinking songs and laughter competing with a loud Bavarian oom pah band.
I would not have made a Germany page just for this one photo but I found some old post cards of the Berlin Wall that I can use to illustrate the cold war atmosphere that prevailed when I flew into Berlin in September 1962.
(The black border indicates that the photos are not mine)
I had open airline tickets for all of my "Discover Europe Tour" so after a few days in Prague I went to a travel agency to make reservations for the Prague to Berlin leg the trip.
Inexperienced as I was, I did not think of specifying the Tempelhof airport in West Germany for which I had a visa and my ticket did not specify which Berlin so the Prague travel agent naturally presumed I was going to East Berlin...
I had a rude awakening after landing in East Berlin's Schönefeld airport where I was arrested, taken to a small interrogation room and grilled for hours by an obtuse uniformed functionary who seemed to think I was a spy.
I was forced to explain time and time again that I was a student on my way to Paris
until at one point the situation appeared so ridiculous to me that I broke out in
uncontrollable laughter in my interrogator's face. It (the face), turned red with
anger and he stormed out to get his superior.
After a long wait, an officer came in and I repeated my story with great sincerity. This officer had something between his ears and decided that the security of East Germany was not threatened by my presence. By that time it was late in the evening so he gave me a transit visa on the spot and a voucher to spend the night in an East Berlin hotel.
The next day, I had a look around East Berlin and crossed into West Berlin by the U-Bahn. Now, it is only an amusing travel incident to tell about but in September 1962 it was deadly serious. I was lucky that it had a happy ending.
From Berlin, I flew to Hamburg, Amsterdam and London before reaching Paris.
Unfortunately, I have no photos left of those places.