13th of May, 2013. Juli and me are on the train to Wismar, both nervous, both unsure about, what’s about to happen to us. Juli listens to one song on her mp3-player over and over again. I am reading the Bahn-Mobil-Magazine, an interview with a writer. The journalist asks: “Have you every cried while writing a scene for one of your books?” The writer answers: “Whenever I don’t cry while writing an emotional scene my gut instinct tells me, it’s no good.” I’m totally down right now, wishing I could have stayed home, where I would watch TV, play Xbox and write occasionally, just like every day.
About two hours later. Juli: “Are we in Meck-Pomm already?” – Andi: “Hard to say.” – Juli: “Kinda looks like, I think.” I write down everything like a maniac.
It’s late afternoon, when we arrive in Wismar, still: both nervous, both unsure about what’s going to happen and if coming here has ever been a good idea. We meet the first other members of the team. We exchange basic informations. We get comfortable, put our feet on the table in the garden of the Filmbüro Wismar; there’s a cat.
Marco Mühlen guides us through the compound, there they edit films, there they make sounds, do seminars. Then we move into the cellar. Dusty film reels on piles in three rows, it’s cold and dark, but when you come close enough you can read the titles: “Saffi Zigeunerbaron”, “Unternehmen Geigenkasten”, “Der Rosinenberg”. Mühlen tells us, that many of those reels had to be saved by members of the team out of the dumpsters after the Wend. We move outside, into the sun. Daniela from Milano says: “Did you know, that Pandas have yellow poop?” I write down everything like a maniac.
In the studio of loud and trendy artist Paetrick Schmidt there’s wine and beer and soup with shrimps. Somebody, I think it was Elena, asks him, where he got his inspiration from. Schmidt: “I steal everywhere.” The frequency of laughter is growing. We introduce each other, the chickens are on display now. Maximo from Spain tries to open a beer bottle with his bare hands. With his bleeding fingers he writes on the paper table-cloth: “Max”. Welcome to Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, this could turn out to actually be great.
14th of May 2013. “You have to run with a very old man”, says Juli. She learned that from a book she found at Café Glücklich: “365 paths to happiness.” We try to stuff as much food as possible into our bodies, because it’s free. Maximo has got it on tape. That’s a more likeable way to happiness.
At the harbour of Wismar we recognize a crowd from far. We keep standing apart, chatting, what could this be, what are these dressed up people up to; the Germans don’t know either. A loud noise shakes our bones. These dressed up people are shooting into the air. That’s what they we’re up to right from the start. We sneak up to them, pass the watching crowd: Boom, they do it again: “Ein Salut für den König.”
After sightseeing we meet Katjas boyfriend. In other words: We meet his Oldtimer-Opel, this sky-blue beauty. Maximo, Elena, Juli and me are lucky enough to enter. Then we boom through this extraordinarily flat land, wind turbines alternate with green tarns and reed. We’re not saturated with this, when we enter Troy-City of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Neubukow.
Our most charming guide, the Neubukow-exopert Burkhard Albrecht, feeds us with historical anecdotes. We also admire his ruby coloured jacket. He knows that people can live together peacefully until they start a fight over a woman and that in the ancient times, people of Neubukow, if they found a corpse on the beach, would cut off his or her finger legally in order to get the jewelery. I think Juli had a tiny little crush on Burkhard, even though she wouldn’t admit. I also think, that you should know, that the sea eagle is returning to this area. I do understand him, the sea eagle, it’s pretty nice. I could easily retire there and live happily ever after, I could start tomorrow.
There’s a tiny museum in Neubukow about the dead celebrity of the city, Heinrich Schliemann. They’ve got some sparkling gold stuff, original material from the diggings, but what we actually learn here following our guide through the museum, is that Mr. Schliemann was the luckiest bastard history has ever shown.
Many lessons like that in the baggage, we leave Neubukow in a soccer-team’s bus, heading towards “Alte Büdnerei” Kühlungsborn. Emilie still thinks, every German part of every German place name, means something. I can translate neither “Born” nor “Büdnerei”. A little boy welcomes us at the spacious farm-like area, telling Juli: “My chicken laid two eggs today.” For the last minutes of our first two days in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern we group around the bonfire, talking astronauts and overweight animals, already not frightened anymore, not even a bit. Actually, I think, I prefer this right now, at least to all the alternatives.