Gudrun S.
62 Jahre

As I watched Hans-Dietrich Genscher’s speech at the Prague Embassy on TV on the 30th of September 1989 and heard the cheers of the people who were now allowed to travel, it touched me deeply. Right there and then I made the decision to get politically involved with the FDP (German Free Democratic Party) and make things happen in the future. Shortly after the fall of the wall my husband, my young son and I drove across the border to Wolfenbüttel to see the city. We spontaneously picked up our Begrüßungsgeld (welcome money) at the Jägermeister factory( a local liquor factory). A couple from Wolfenbüttel started talking to us, showed us the city and invited us to stay the night at their house. We therefore didn’t get the chance to spend the Begrüßungsgeld (welcome money). With the balcony speech in Prague in mind, I got in touch with Genscher’s office and founded a local FDP group in Aschersleben in January 1990. The first free local elections were just around the corner, so fellow party members from our twin city Peine suggested using flyers to introduce our candidates and manifesto. I used my Begrüßungsgeld as a deposit to print the FDP-flyers, which I ordered from a printer’s in Hildesheim. Everything happened very quickly after that. Among a flood of spectators, Otto Graf Lambsdorff (important politician for the liberal Democrats) and I together opened the local election campaign on Aschersleben’s town square in May 1990. The young FDP won two seats in Aschersleben’s city council. I got one of them. At the same time, the FDP district association elected me as party leader. In 2002, I became a member of the German Federal Parliament as representative for Sachsen-Anhalt. These years were a long and rocky road, also marked by private setbacks. But I wouldn’t change this exciting time for anything!