No time. Running late. Walked forever this morning. Behind on prep.
Berlin. Last time I was in Berlin was, by luck, New Year's Eve/Night the year the Wall came down—most amazing celebration/experience I've ever been in the midst of.
Last night at about Midnight I landed from London. Airport in old West Zone. Hotel in old East Zone. Hence, as I took first step in the East, I was, at 62, taking my first step on the land of my Grandfather Peters' birth. (Jacob Ebert Peters, emigrated to Baltimore in, I believe, 1873.) Wow, what a feeling. (Truth be told, it came to me later, when I woke up with a start at about 2 a.m.)
Walk this morning took me immediately to Brandenburg Gate (center of that New Year's 1989 celebration), then to the Reichstag. Had another odd feeling as I crossed no man's land. Intellectually I of course know it's safe—but I couldn't help feeling, "Hope with their typical efficiency, the Germans got all the Soviet mines!"
Next I walked in Tiergarten. I'm a Cold War spy novel fanatic, and it seems to me that most of the secret meetings in Berlin that LeCarré (et al.) conjured up took place in the Tiergarten. Makes sense.
Then more wanders ... and back to hotel. Speak to Siemens clients this evening. I'll be especially courteous: Back in 1979, Siemens almost single-handedly financed (fees to McKinsey) the research for In Search of Excellence!