The View East

Central and Eastern Europe, Past and Present.

‘Communist Timewarp’ Found in Germany.

In what could be a scene straight from Wolfgang Becker’s hit film ‘Goodbye Lenin!’ (2003), an architect surveying buildings in the (formerly East German) city of Leipzig opened the door to a flat to discover it had apparently lain untouched since the 1980s.

Mark Aretz, seemingly the first vistor to the flat in over twenty years, was surveying the site for renovations and has described how he opened the door and stepped back into a ‘veritable East German timewarp’, where the kitchen was stocked with old GDR grocery brands, communist-era Juwel cigarettes and Kristall vodka. A calender hanging on the wall was turned to August 1988 – around fifteen months before the fall of the Berlin Wall.

The full story is yet to unfold, but letters found in the flat suggest that the occupant was a man aged 24 who was in some trouble with the East German authorities. It also seems that whatever his reason for leaving, it was sudden – a bag of shrivelled bread rolls lay open on the kitchen table.

The Berliner Morgenpost have published a feature on the recent discovery – the article is in German, but also includes a series of fascinating photos of the flat:


January 29, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , ,

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