Trabants, Italians and DDR-Day One & Two

Arriving after a 14 hour drive we were greeted by a leather clad Dominico-an Italian from the mountains in the middle of Italy, but now living in Colonge.  He told me immediately that I had not answered to his facebook greeting because I'd seen his photo and thought "$%!* off"! Surprised, since I had replied with great curteousy, I realised very quickly here was someone who was used to the rougher side of life and expected that on a daily basis.  I was told later over wine, pasta and southern Italian songs about his bar that was right next to a nunnery that were fortunate enough to have a wild risqué display every evening on their security cameras.  Even later in the artsy Kreuzberg district, I was told about an insident outside the Colonge embassy not too long ago. Beginning to realise why this man is an essential componant in the making of this DDR documentary, I saw how reactionary people can get once placed so near to such tight control--of any kind, be it religious, state or domestic.
   On the way to Berlin we had stopped at the Deutsche grenze in the countryside.  Some of the iron curtain had remained in tact and had been preserved as an open air museum.  We walked inside the iron and concrete border to find pathways that were like those trapping an animal.  Many victims having successfully escaped over the first wall, were then faced with a fatal surprising and sometimes slow end.  Later the next day at the Mauer Denkmal Ruggero, my north Italian colleague who had already been shooting for a month in Berlin told me about the death of one victim who had been shot but not killed.  He would have lived if aid from either the west or east side had come.  Instead he lay trapped inbetween both sides in the grenze and bled to death.