Travelling around Europe on my motor scooter in the summer of sixty-seven, I had
opportunities to view what was then called at that time the Iron Curtain. This was the border between the countries of the capitalist west and the communist east, that may have been more or less fenced or walled from the Baltic Sea in the north all the way to Yugoslavia. My first experience of a lesser version of this phenomenon was in north/south Ireland, and my last was an as extreme example in Cyprus separating the Turks and Greeks. The following particular instances occurred while travelling in West and East Germany on my way to
Berlin and in the divided city proper.
The road I was travelling was close to the border between East and West Germany. Evening was closing in and so I found a place to camp off road in a wood, that was within less than a hundred yards from the border. After cooking dinner and partaking of a cup of my nightly black tea and a smoke, as it was falling dark, I decided to head over to the curtain for a close-up look. My walk through the woods was moon-lit. Very quickly I came upon what was really two cyclone fences each about fifteen feet high and separated by a space of about twenty feet. I looked to my right and saw a guard tower at a distance of about a quarter-mile. It was a small square box windowed on four sides, lit from the inside and standing on four sticks planted in between and perched higher than the fence screen. Two guards were sitting inside probably reading.
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