Kategorie-Archiv: In Städten und Ländern.

Von Seemännern und Mikrofonen.

27. November 2013

Ich habe den gesamten Tag bei der Kulturstiftung Casa Alemana verbracht. Das was ich als zwei musizierende Vagabunden verstanden hatte, stellte sich als deutlich mehr heraus. Die Vagabunden heißen Ben und Hannes und kennen sich vom Tontechnikstudium in Berlin. Irgendwann haben sie ein Segelboot gekauft und sich in den Kopf gesetzt Musik mit Musikern von überall aus der Welt aufzunehmen. Eine Platte daraus zu machen, ein Buch zu schreiben und einen Film darüber zu drehen. Das ist jetzt zwei Jahre her. Weitere neun Monate wollen sie noch unterwegs sein. Den ganzen Tag haben sie mit verschiedensten Musikern aus Cartagena in der prallen Hitze aufgenommen. In der Casa Alemana. In einem grünen Hinterhof. Auf der Stadtmauer am Meer. Ich habe die ganze Zeit gelauscht, Mikrofone und Kameras getragen und mir die Geschichten der Weltreisenden angehört. Es war ein perfekter erster Tag. Die Jungs sind schon wieder unterwegs. Als nächstes Segeln sie nach Jamaika. Hannes wird in ein paar Wochen nach Deutschland fliegen und ich habe ihn zu einem Studiobesuch bei mir verpflichtet, bei dem er diese wunderschöne Geschichte erzählen muss.

Morgen werde ich dann etwas tiefer in die Stadt eintauchen und auch das erste Mal in den Ozean. Die Katze sitzt mir wieder gegenüber auf dem Stuhl. Ich glaube sie möchte etwas von den selbstgebackenen Plätzchen, die die Eltern meiner Freundin mir für sie mitgegeben haben und die jetzt auf dem kleinen Tisch im Innenhof stehen.

Fotos von diesem wunderbaren Tag gibt es in einem anderen Eintrag.

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Cartaribik!

26. November 2013

Geschafft! Mit viel Verspätung bin ich gestern Abend in Cartagena gelandet. Meine Freundin hat mich auf einen belebten Platz in der Nähe ihres Hauses mitgenommen. Es war voll mit Menschen, Jongleuren, jungen Leuten die Kunststücke mit Skateboards und Hula Hoop Reifen machten. Wir haben gefüllte Maisfladen gegessen und noch ein Bier getrunken. Dann sind wir nach Hause. Sie lebt im Haus eines Künstlers. Durch sein Atelier gelangt man in einen kleinen Innenhof, an den mehrere Zimmer angrenzen, in denen junge Leute wohnen. Ich fand es gestern hier schon sehr schön. Als ich heute morgen im Hellen aufwachte, sogar noch ein bisschen mehr. In der offenen Küche sich ein Müsli zusammenmixen und es dann im Hof unter dem Sonnensegel und dem wachsamen Blick einer Katze zu essen, ist schon gut. Die Freundin, die ich hier besuche, ist bereits zur Arbeit gegangen. Sie arbeitet in einer kleinen Kulturstiftung in der Altstadt von Cartagena. Dort werde ich jetzt hingehen. Zwei Künstler aus Rostock, die die Welt umsegeln sind zu Gast und werden ein bisschen Musik machen. Danach werde ich mich durch die bunten, karibischen Gassen treiben lassen und an den Sommersprossen arbeiten.

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Flucht vor Kälte.

26. November 2013

Ich hänge gerade am Flughafen in Bogotà fest. Mein Flug nach Cartagena hat Verspätung. Das habe ich nun über Umwege herausgefunden. Denn das einzige Gate an dem die Anzeige nicht funktioniert ist meins und was die hier so auf Spanisch erzählen, verstehe ich sowieso nicht. Das wird abenteuerlich werden, wenn sie nicht mal am Flughafen Englisch sprechen. Das ist wie das erste Mal in China sein, nur ohne Schriftzeichen. Wenigstens kann ich mir mit meinen verkümmerten Französischkenntnissen noch etwas zusammenreimen. Die Sonne hat meine Haut noch nicht geküsst. Die Sonne ging schon unter als ich hier ankam. Jetzt ist es Abend. Eine Freundin wird mich in Cartagena am Flughafen erwarten. Wir werden zu Ihr nach Hause fahren und noch etwas essen gehen. Dann wird es spät sein und ich wohl todmüde ins Bett fallen. Ab morgen arbeite ich an den Sommersprossen.

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Briefwechsel.

Manchmal bist du beschäftigt. Keine Zeit. Es ist gar nicht so, dass du nicht genug Zeit hättest. Der Kopf ist nur einfach zu voll mit anderen Dingen. Es gibt so Zeiten. In dieses Blog wurde in den vergangenen Monaten wenig geschrieben. Dabei habe ich so viel geschrieben, wie schon lange nicht mehr. Emails. Viele, viele Emails. Auch meine Reise nach Kolumbien im vergangenen November ist in vielen elektronischen Briefen festgehalten. Ich habe mich dazu entschlossen, meine Mails, die ich in Kolumbien geschrieben habe in etwas veränderter Form zu veröffentlichen. Das ist auch der Grund, warum diese Reiseeinträge ausnahmsweise auf Deutsch kommen.

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Sailing Conductors in Cartagena

Hit The Sea Jack.

You just arrived in Colombia, in the beautiful old town of Cartagena. You visit a friend here and when you wake up, you are alone. She has left for work. There are two sailing vagabonds coming over to Casa Cultural Colombo Alemana. This is at least what you thought. But those two young sailors where not some vagabonds, playing some music on a guitar. It’s more. Hannes and Ben call themselves the Sailing Conductors. Once they did not know what to do after their studies and so they bought a sailing boat. And since then they were recording music on their trip with people from all over the world. This is about two years ago. That particular day they were in Cartagena. In the Casa Alemana, where your friend was working and you were dropping by. There were still eight more months to go for them. They recorded the whole day, in the heat of the day and the glooming sun of Carribean Cartagena. You were a listener. Both of the music. And their stories. There were a lot to tell. What a good start. Hello Colombia!

 

 

 

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Krakow

The story between train rides. Poland. one.

Where do you go for vacation? – To Poland. – Why the hell!

Already before that question I knew why we, a friend with Polish routes and me, wanted to go to Poland: beutiful old cities, hearty food, caring people and some shared history. Seven days, one flight and lots of train rides I am not disappointed.

We started in Krakow. My friend M., who travelled a few days earlier there to visit some family, caught me with her uncle at the airport. He brang us to the city centre of Krakow. The Old town is stunningly beautiful there. Through small streets and alleys lined with colourful, plastered and painted houses you walk Rynek Główny. This main square together with the cloth halles builds the centre of old Krakow. The shops in there are so small that sometimes only one person can stand in a booth.

When there comes darkness in the evening and the lights in the streets arise and lighten the old buildings, Krakow is getting even more romantic. By the way – have you ever seen the sky burning?

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The Be(rlin)thlehem Wall

One thing you should not miss to visit when you are in Bethlehem is the great wall separating the city from its surroundings. The wall is around nine meters high and on top of it you can see barbed wire. It actually reminds me a lot of the Berlin Wall, which looked the same, just not as high as the one here in Bethlehem. You can also find a lot of paintings and slogans there on the wall that compare the Berlin Wall to the Wall around Bethlehem. Most of the wall is covered with paintings, slogans and graffiti. You can also find some pieces of the street artist Banksy here. He is honored like a national hero here. There is even a souvenir shop just for Banksy stuff in the border area inside Bethlehem. Again there is a lot of Israeli military around here in the so called Area C (under Israeli control).

 

We walked along the wall, breathing in the conflict, trying to catch the meaning of all those graffiti. There  is a ‘Wall Museum’ which actually contains lots of big posters, which are fixed to the wall. On those posters you can read the stories of Palestine civilians and their experiences with the Intifadas, the building of the wall and what it means to their daily lives. It really hits you emotionally. And yes when you wander around there, reading all those stories: yes – you feel pity, no matter if this is right or not.
We met a young Palestine woman, who lived right next to the wall. She was asking us if we had time, so that she could share her story with us: The street we were in used to be one of the busiest in Bethlehem. A lot of people were using that road to get to Jerusalem and vice versa. The family had a few shops in the street and was earning good money. As there was the last Intifada the Israeli army annexed the house, using it for strategic reasons and shooting, since it was right at the border. The military left, but then the wall was built – surrounding all the houses of the family, cutting off the busy street.
The wall ruined the family’s business. When they look out of the window there is this huge wall. The woman told us her daughter was crying that day ‘They buried us alive’. I have no idea if all of that story was true, But I guess it was. There was no reason for this woman to lie. Again I felt like the regular people living in Palestine just wanted to call attention to their situation, so that some foreigners would spread the message to the world. Looks like it turned out.
We walked further leaving the wall museum behind and arrived at the checkpoint where people cross the border to Israel by feet. There are two barred small lanes: oe for the entrance, one for the exit. It was late afternoon and the checkpoint was crowded with men. Probably a lot of men were coming back from their work in Jerusalem. This is also a big problem. A lot of people in Bethlehem work in the try close by Jerusalem. But you never know if the border will be open the next day and even if it is, Palestinians usually do not get a job in Israel.
As so often we were asked here where we were from. As usual people were very happy to hear we are from Germany. But for the first time one guy did not make a secret about, why he liked Germans: Germans used to fight the Jews. It happened a lot of times that people were very welcoming when they heard we were from Germany. I do not want to assume that all of them were thinking like that, cos there are also a lot of German volunteers in the West Bank. But the thought always crossed my mind. And obviously the German government is not too fond about helping Palestine.
When we came to Bethlehem we came here by bus. After we saw this busy checkpoint we decided to walk through it the next day on our way back to Jerusalem. It is easy to cross here for a German. The Israeli Military did not even check our passports, they just waved through the gates. Palestinians contrarily have to show their passports and identify themselves by their fingerprint. Not to mention that you have to go through X-ray security check beforehand.
Herewith the Palestine Experience had come to an end. We were back on our way to Tel Aviv, excited to hear what our Israeli friends would think about our trip.

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Aida Camp

Bethlehem and Aida Refugee Camp

We stayed the night in Jerusalem and went to Bethlehem the next morning. We were taking the bus there, since the situation there is more tense than in Jericho. Disregarding that the car rental company was not allowing us to go to Bethlehem by car, it is not advisable. It might happen that people will throw stones at your car when you have the yellow Israeli car plate.

At the checkpoint some strict military women were entering the bus, checking all the passports, writing down the names of Israelis going to Palestine. The Bus dumped us somewhere close to the city center of Bethlehem. By feet we crossed the centre and the old city to find our accommodation at the other end of the city.

We were not sure if we were still on the right way, that’s why we asked for the way in a souvenir shop. The  people there were very nice and Joseph, the owner of the shop, offered us to give us a ride to the guesthouse. The guesthouse in Beit Jala unfortunately was fully booked. The women there tried to arrange some other accommodation for us and so we ended up in – a Christian monastery. Joseph took us there, leaving his name and telephone number in case we would need anything. The room smelled like desinfections. The room was plastered with pictures of Jesus and Holy Mary, a cross was hanging over the bed. Well, ending your Israeli/Palestine travel experience with a stay in a monastery just aces it somewhat a successful roundup.
Right after leaving our luggage in the monastery we went for some sightseeing in the city. We started at the Church of Nativity, where it is said Jesus was born. The entrance is just a very small inconsiderable door. They say the Church of Nativity is the oldest Church in the world. Inside Monks in dark robes were singing. There were also a lot of pilgrims, wanting to visit that holy birth grotto underneath the altar. It was so crowded that the believers only were allowed to stay in the grotto for a few seconds to make way for other people to pray. I kind of felt sad for them. You may have saved your money for years to come here, you waited so long and then some guard interrupts you prayer by shouting: ‘Only two seconds, only two seconds, move forward!’ Even for me it was too hectic.
We then strolled around the old city, walking along the way Joseph and Mary took. The market in the old city is wonderful, but nothing for hygiene lovers and vegetarians. The sellers are shouting, the bargaining is loud, kids are running around with carts as if they were in a supermarket. There are stalls and booths for meat, fruits and veggies. In the outspreads of the market further to the new city center there you will find clothes, some trashy stuff, furniture and shoes.  There are guys running around with pipe like looking cans decorated with flowers, serving tea in the streets to thirsty men. The city of Bethlehem is bustling. The narrow streets are jam-packed with shops, sellers in the streets and people of all ages. It is a city with lots of differences: different religions, the spiritualness of an old holy city, the sleaziness in some places and the wall seperating Bethlehem from Israel. We also went there, but you can read about it in another article.
In the evening we went to a restaurant called the Square right at Manger Square where you also find the Church of Nativity. One of the waiters, Mahmoud, was living in Aida Camp one of the Palestinian refugee camps close to Bethlehem. He asked if we visited this place. So far we didn’t. Kati and me had been mulling over coming to this place cos it feels like poverty tourism. But when Mahmoud encouraged us to go there cos we were really welcome to see his place, we decided to go there. At Aida Camp you will find poor housings and it feels like its a camp of kids. There are kids all over, playing football in the streets, running around. In general Aida camp is overcrowed. There is trash in the streets, the people are rather humble and shy, but friendly. Still it was a strange feeling to walk around at this refugee camp, observed by the eyes of the military.

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