Thursday Outing

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We had a twelve hour day yesterday: Leaving our home a bit before seven in the morning and returning a bit before seven at night. We actually caught the 7,15 train from Dapto, changed trains at Refern (one stop before Central). From Redfern we caught the Western Line train to Newtown. In Newtown is one of our favourite cinemas. Since we’ve been there last time the complex was enlarged. They have now ten cinemas within the building!

Arriving at Newtown Station, Peter straight away took a whole lot of pictures along the way to the DENDY Cinema. Onece at the DENDY we noticed the milkbar had already opened. So we took seats to have a cup of flat white. We also ordered some delicious fruit salad, which we shared.

The movie was a German movie called ‘Barbara’. It was in German with English subtitles. Only a handful of people watched it with us. We thought this movie was very well made. The main actors were really, really good. They were both medical doctors working in a hospital in the northern parts of Germany at the time of the German Democratic Republic (GDR). They had a very miserable life. Under what conditions people had to work in the GDR. is very truthfully and realistically brought to life in this movie. Peter said, he can’t understand how people can feel nostalgic about a place like this! Maybe a lot of people tend to remember the things that have been good in the GDR and choose to forget the constant harassing. This is why they don’t care to think about it how in those days they could very easily be deprived of their freedom, meaning you could end up in jail or be taken in for questioning again and again. You were not able to trust anyone, for everyone could be a spy who wanted to dob you in for offences against the state of the workers.

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On the way back to the station we talked a lot about the movie we had just seen. We decided we’d go by train back to Redfern and from there catch a fast train to Parramatta. At Parramatta Station we had a quick lunch. We then took the free bus as far as the Ferry Station at Parramatta river. However we didn’t venture down to the wharf but went to the foot-bridge instead which lead us to the other side of the river.

According to the map which Peter had printed out, it would be only a short walk to where the Aged Care Facility was once we had crossed the river. It turned out to be another twenty minutes for me in the heat of the early afternoon. In the end I got quite stressed and hot. However we found the place we were looking for, no worries. It turned out to be a huge place with a lot of wards, similar to a hospital. David was in a two-bed room. His room-mate was outside somewhere. But David lay in bed. Apparently he lies in bed most of the time. He smokes only two cigs a day. A nurse takes him outside in a wheelchair for this.

David was quite happy to see us. A few of his things which we had found amongst all of Gaby’s stuff, we handed over to David. He kept everything in his room to look at it later. We told David we’d see him again around the time of this birthday. He said he was looking forward to see his brother Anthony and sister Ann soon.

On the way back to the station we noticed a crowd in front of a huge building. We don’t know whether it was a demonstration or a fire-drill.

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We could have gone down to the wharf to catch a ferry to the city and go from there back home by train. But it was getting a bit too late for this. So we just caught the free bus back to Parramatta Station and went home from there. We did the ferry trip quite a few times over the years. It’s lovely to travel to the city all the way on the water. Sure we’d like to do this again some other time. I’m sure there’s going to be another time.

15 thoughts on “Thursday Outing

  1. A very busy day out, Uta! I must look out for that film – maybe on DVD. Am in the middle of a post that touches on the GDR – I thoroughly agree that it’s hard to understand how people could be nostalgic for those days, but the answer is that we tend to forget the bad things and only remember the good. People were to some extent “secure” in their prison and didn’t have to take responsibility.

    1. Thanks for commenting, Cat.
      I guess conditions in the GDR may have affected different people in different ways. Even after more than twenty years of reunification the parts of Germany that used to be GDR are still somewhat disadvantaged, for instance a greater number of people unemployed and more poor people than in other parts of Germany.
      In the GDR everyone was working and poor. Basic production was never up to date to cater for the needs of the people. Everything was scarce all the time. A lot of resources went into providing ‘security’ for the state. People who didn’t do what the party wanted them to do were constantly spied upon and often ended in jail as political prisoners. The worst crime was when it was detected that you wanted to leave this prison of a state and when on top of it you may have come into possession of foreign currency!
      The movie just shows the life of some highly qualified doctors how they manage their lives in a provincial hospital, the difficulties they personally come up with but also their little comforts and joys.

      1. Yep – I experienced some of it firsthand visiting friends and relatives in the seventies and eighties, and knew people who had applied to leave. But sometimes hindsight wears rose-coloured spectacles!

  2. That is one fun trip my friend. Beautiful buildings. Also very creative table top made of an old wooden electric cable rim. Thanks for sharing your exciting adventures. take care.

    1. Thanks for your comment, dear IT. Yes, we had a really good day. Everything went smoothly. At the same time it was a rather exhausting day for us. Glad you liked the pictures. Newtown is known for its creative people. It’s got a very lively atmosphere.

  3. Yes I must admit this walk in this hot weather and most of the way the sun shining too was somewhat difficult for me. But I made it, didn’t I? I really like this kind of warm weather but only when I don’t have to walk long distances while it’s warm like this!
    T.Y., Berlioz, for the lovely comment. I did enjoy the day even though it was a bit tiring.

  4. You’re welcome, Robert. The movie shows a snippet of life in the German Democratic Republic and I think was very well made. It catches the true atmosphere of that place. In Newtown Peter took all the pictures. I like them a lot too.
    It was somewhat exhausting to go to Parramatta on the same day. But I was glad we finally made it to see David in that Aged Care Facility.

  5. You had a very full day, Uta. And I admire how many things you packed in! The movie sounds interesting and would be a good one for me to see. I think many of us in the US have quite distanced ourselves from the history of the GDA and could use a “refresher” on the implications. I have one nephew who studied in Germany and spent a lot of time living and working in different sectors of the country and he often communicates quite brilliantly with us, but once again it is from an American perspective, I’m sure. I like hearing your perspective very much.

    And then all that walking in the heat…like I said, you had a VERY full day! 🙂

    1. A very full day indeed, Debra. About Germany I have divided feelings. Maybe I should write a post about it. I like to walk early in the morning when it isn’t quite as hot yet. However it’s lovely to still have beautiful hot late summer days. I really enjoy this kind of weather.
      Thanks for your comment, Debra, and have a lovely Easter week!

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