Katrin F.
54 Jahre

We drove out of Stralsund but we didn’t want to stop in Lübeck because we were hoping Kiel would be less crowded. In our circle only a few of us had cars so we organised carpools. We also bought something with our welcome money, but not immediately. We didn’t want to fall for the hype and just go for the first offer we saw so we decided to just explore the city. Many were lured by the materialism. You could see entire sofa sets in the garbage because people wanted to have new ones from the West.

Shortly after the wall fell we moved to Berlin. It was a difficult time with two small children and all the changes in the system. I was often scared. We had planned to move to Berlin anyway but it would have been easier before the reunification. The things we planned had come to naught. I had to look for a new job and the school system was different. I do not know how we managed, but we did. It all happened so fast.

We bought a video recorder with the welcome money. I can’t remember if they were even available in the GDR. We always got technology a few years later than everywhere else. Then all at once electrical appliances were no longer unattainable. The value of things had completely changed. TVs cost only a fifth of the GDR price but goods for basic needs were suddenly very expensive.