Archive | April, 2015

The “Pioneer Family”

30 Apr

Today I was looking for some more pictures from the past. I came up with two pictures from 1958 and another two pictures from 1960

Peter with Gaby

Peter with Gaby

This pictures was taken in Düsseldorf, Germany, in a park called ‘Hofgarten’, on 17th June 1958. Gaby was not quite nine months yet at the time.

Uta and Peter with Gaby

Uta and Peter with Gaby

This pictures was taken by Uta’s Mum on her balcony in Berlin in August 1958. Gaby was nearly one year old. We were for a visit in Berlin at the time.

Uta with Baby Martin, two months, Monika, eighteen months, and Gaby  thirty-three months.

Uta with Baby Martin, two months, Monika, eighteen months, and Gaby thirty-three months.

This pictures was taken near Fairy Meadow Beach, New South Wales, Australia, in June 1960.

Uta and Peter (25) with all three children

Uta and Peter (25) with all three children

This is where the pioneer family ended up in Oak Flats, NSW, Australia, which was ‘the sticks’ at the time. This picture was taken on the 28th August 1960 which was Gaby’s birthday. We were building a garage at the time. One year later the children were stricken by polio; as it turned out, Gaby very severely.

I wrote the above in January 2013. I was looking for a photo from our Berlin visit in August 1958 and found one in this blog. I was pregnant at the time. In December our daughter Monika was born in Düsseldorf where we had one room in my father’s apartment. We thought being given the opportunity to go to Australia as migrants was the best thing that could have happened to us.

11 Responses to “The “Pioneer Family””

berlioz1935
January 23, 2013 at 4:47 pm Edit #
The beginning in Australia was tough and sometimes we felt like a “pioneer family”.. On the beach picture you can clearly see the Fairy Meadow Hostel were we lived for a while.

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auntyuta
January 23, 2013 at 5:18 pm Edit #
You’re right, Peter, the beach was only a few steps away from the hostel. I thought it was great to have the beach so close. The picture you refer to was taken in June, in the middle of the Australian winter!

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Robert M. WeissR
January 25, 2013 at 8:41 am Edit #
Great archival type photos, which reminds me it’s time to straighten up our family photos.

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auntyuta
January 25, 2013 at 11:12 am Edit #
Thanks for commenting, Robert. I read your profile, which is very interesting. Do you do any writing? You seem to be a very contemplative person. If you’re writing, I’d like to hear more about it.
Cheerio, Uta.

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backonmyown
January 26, 2013 at 12:00 pm Edit #
I love the old photos. Your family was beautiful. My youngest sister Gerry had polio when she was two years old. Fortunately she had no lingering effects, and recovered completely. I was ten at the time. I remember how scared we all were.

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auntyuta
January 26, 2013 at 6:01 pm Edit #
Hi, Pam. We always love to look at all our old photos. Gaby was severely effected, She became a quadriplegic and needed an iron lung.
Monika had some lingering effects in one of her legs and Martin recovered completely. It was a very scary time for us when all three children suffered from the disease.

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backonmyown
January 27, 2013 at 2:44 am Edit #
I can’t even imagine how terrified you and Peter must have been with all three children seriously ill at the same. My middle daughter is a public health lawyer. She has asked me lots of questions about the polio epidemics. I’ll tell her about your family’s story. Thanks for sharing it. Pat

Three Well Beings
January 26, 2013 at 4:56 pm Edit #
I really enjoyed seeing family photos, Uta. From what you’re sharing, the children were very young when they contracted polio. I cannot imagine how difficult that must have been! I do remember when that disease frightened families and changed lives forever!

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auntyuta
January 26, 2013 at 6:07 pm Edit #
That’s right, Debra, they all contracted polio. Martin was 1, Monika 2 and Gaby was struck down with the disease on her fourth birthday. No vaccinations were available at the time. A bit later oral vaccinations were introduced. I think this stopped the spread of polio in Australia.

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Three Well Beings
January 26, 2013 at 6:50 pm Edit #
I really can’t imagine, Uta! As a mom, this must have been devastating. They were just babies. I’m a little awed you can even talk about it. oxo

auntyuta
January 26, 2013 at 8:45 pm Edit #
It was a very emotional time for Peter too. All three children were admitted to Wollongong Hospital. Gaby went on to Intensive Care at Prince Henry Hospital in Sydney where she was in a coma. According to the specialist there was not much chance of her surviving. We had gone in the ambulance with her and stayed with her through the night. Early in the morning we went back to Wollongong on the milk-train. That morning after a lot of weeping we went to see Monika and Martin in Wollongong Hospital. Martin Baby soon became the darling of the nurses. He looked so cute. When we saw him he started throwing all the toys out of his cot the nurses had put in there for him. Monika was more sick than Martin and absolutely quiet. A few days later Martin was allowed to go back home. We were overwhelmed when we had him back home. Monika had to stay in hospital a bit longer. Once she was home she was referred to a specialist who treated her leg. Some muscles were weakened because of polio. She had to wear special boots and a splint on her left leg which she hated!

Reflections on Travel

29 Apr

Recently I reflected a lot on our past two overseas travels. One trip to Berlin we did five years ago and another one two and a half years ago. When we travel we always try to economise, meaning we are not out to stay in expensive hotels or visit restaurants that are well above our budget. The greatest extra expense we consider to be the air-travel ticket plus insurance. Since both Peter and I are going to be past eighty when we travel next time the insurance is going to be sky high! We usually book a flight well in advance and look for special offers. The last two times we did fly with Malaysian Airline from Sydney to Kuala Lumpur and from there we had connecting flights with KLM. We thought these flights via Kuala Lumpur were pretty good. Soon we want to find out what’s on offer for next year.

2016 is going to be a huge family reunion in Berlin. Our Australian family is already planning for all this.  Some members in our family have never been to Berlin yet and are very keen to get to know a bit about the city and the German family members who live there. Especially Peter’s sister Ilse is very hopeful that a large family meeting can take place next year in Berlin. She and Finn are already thinking about all the arrangements that can be made. One of our grandsons is busy making plans about all the destinations where he and his family intend to travel to. He worked out that a nine day stay in Berlin could be included. They also want to stay for a few days in London and maybe some days in Switzerland, and I think there was also talk about Paris.

When Peter heard that they plan on staying for nine days in Berlin,  he  soon thought about a number of places he could show them in Berlin. Peter knows Berlin very well, partly from personal experience but a lot he knows because he keeps himself always up to date on the internet about what is going on in Berlin. When it come to history, he can tell you a thing or two about Berlin’s history as well. The past few days he published memories about the last days in Berlin before the end of World War Two. You can look it up under:

https://berlioz1935.wordpress.com/2015/04/24/tuesday-24-april-1945/

The memories start already here:

https://berlioz1935.wordpress.com/2015/04/17/berlin-the-last-battle-in-europe-during-world-war-2/

There are diary entries of Peter’s mother which he translated.  Also, Peter’s own comments about these eventful days continue for several days.

It is amazing how much Peter remembers about this time seventy years ago. This was just a few days before he turned ten! He also likes to read up on official records about the last days in Berlin before the end of the war, and he is also always looking for relevant pictures from that time.

Our Five Weeks Holiday in 2010

27 Apr

From Sydney we did fly with Malaysian Airline to Kuala Lumpur. Our connecting flight was with KLM to Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam. From there we had another connecting flight with KLM to Tegel Airport in Berlin.

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Gaby, Caroline and Matthew had come to Sydney Airport to farewell us.

Caroline took this photo.

Caroline took this photo.

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Peter took a few photos in Kuala Lumpur at the airport.

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We enjoyed the Tropical Garden in the midst of Kuala Lumpur Airport.

We enjoyed the Tropical Garden in the midst of Kuala Lumpur Airport.

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When we arrived at Tegel Airport there were Daniel, Ilse and Ingrid waiting for us.

When we arrived at Tegel Airport there were Daniel, Ilse and Ingrid waiting for us.

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They took us first of all to Scharnweber Strasse, where Ilse lives. It was Spargel (Asparagus) time in Berlin. Ilse served us a sumptuous Spargel lunch. Soon after lunch, Ilse’s son Daniel drove us to our holiday unit in Bastian Strasse. We stayed in this unit for fifteen nights. On the morning of Tuesday, the 15th of June we were picked up by Peter Uwe, my brother, and his partner Astrid. They took us to their home in Neu Canow in Mecklenburg Vorpommern where we stayed for nine nights. On Thursday, 24th of June, they drove us back to Berlin. Peter’s sister Ilse accommodated us for the rest of our stay in Berlin

On Friday, 2nd of July, Klaudia, my brother’s ex-wife, drove us to Tegel Airport for our departure back to Australia. Several family members farewelled us at Tegel Airport.

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For Saturday, the 26th of June, our last Saturday before our departure, Ilse had organised a family meeting. One cousin came from England, another one with his daughter came from Frankfurt and Peter’s sister Eva came with husband Harald from Windischgarsten in Austria. And of course Ilse’s sons and family, who live in Berlin came also as well as Eva’s daughter and granddaughter. Ilse’s partner Finn made a great video of the occasion. A copy of it he sent to us to Australia. There were also some photos taken of this family gathering. I show some of them here:

We met at this restaurant in Scharnweber Strasse.

We met at this restaurant in Scharnweber Strasse.

Peter with his sister Eva who came from Austria.

Peter with his sister Eva who came from Austria.

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Another photo in front <a href=

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Ilse und Finn

Ilse und Finn

Ilse and Finn invited us for another farewell meal at the same restaurant a few days later.

Here Ilse talks to Daniel, the manager of the restaurant.

Here Ilse talks to Daniel, the manager of the restaurant.

Finn took this photo.

Finn took this photo.

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About TPP

23 Apr
Published on Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Democratic Trade War: Obama Says Warren ‘Wrong’ on TPP as Reid Says ‘Hell No’ to Fast Track

Split among Democratic lawmakers front and center as push for corporate-friendly trade pact heads for key votes in Congress

At a labor rally last week, Sen. Elizabeth Warren said workers “have to fight back” against corporate-friendly deals like TPP. “I’m proud to be with you and I’m going to be with you all the way,” she said. (Image: Screengrab/AFL-CIO)

President Obama on Tuesday evening said that progressives like Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) who have called out the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement for being a corporate-power grab and have vowed to defeat legislation designed to ram it through Congress are simply “wrong” when it comes to the pending deal between the U.S. and 11 Asian and Pacific nations.

Specifically singling out Sen. Warren for her steadfast opposition, Obama defended the TPP in an interview with MSNBC‘s Chris Matthews that aired Tuesday evening.

“I love Elizabeth. We’re allies on a whole host of issues, but she’s wrong on this,” Obama said about the deal.

In op-ed earlier this year, Warren condemned the TPP for its inclusion of a provision known as Investor-State Dispute Settlement, or ISDS, which would allow private corporations to sue governments if they believe laws or regulations are impeding their ability to make profits or adequately compete in a market. “The name may sound mild, but don’t be fooled,” argued Warren. “Agreeing to ISDS in this enormous new treaty would tilt the playing field in the United States further in favor of big multinational corporations. Worse, it would undermine U.S. sovereignty.”

And last week, Warren spoke at an anti-TPP rally sponsored by the AFL-CIO where she told the crowd: “Are you ready to fight any more deals that say ‘we’re going to help the rich get richer and leave everybody else behind’? Workers have to fight back. I’m proud to be with you and I’m going to be with you all the way.”

On Tuesday, Senator Harry Reid, the top-ranking Democrat in the Senate, voiced his strongest opposition yet to pending bills in Congress that would grant the Obama administration what is known as Trade  Promotion Authority, or Fast Track, which would give the White House power to finalize the terms of the deal without oversight or input from lawmakers. If Fast Track is approved, the trade deal would receive only an up-or-down vote in Congress without the ability to make changes.

“You couldn’t find a person to ask this question who feels more negatively about it than I do,” Reid told reporters after being asked whether he supports Fast Track for the TPP.  “So the answer is not only no, but hell no.”

The Senate Finance Committee is scheduled to vote Wednesday on the Fast Track measure, introduced by Sens. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.).

As Politico notes on Wednesday, congressional approval of Fast Track “is seen as integral to both reaching a bilateral agreement with Japan and bringing home the 12-nation TPP agreement — the largest trade deal in U.S. history. But an indication that the fast-track bill doesn’t have enough votes could deal a blow to the negotiations.”

For critics of TPP, passage of Fast Track is basically seen as pre-approval of TPP itself.

On Monday, approximately a thousand people representing a coalition of public advocacy groups, environmentalists, and labor unions marched to the office of the U.S. Trade Representative to voice their strong opposition to both TPP and Fast Track. At a rally preceding the march, political activist Jim Hightower said, “The TPP isn’t a trade deal. It is a corporate coup d’etat that is about to be rammed down the American people’s throats. It would make us poorer and less free and we the people aren’t going to stand by and let it happen.”

Berlin in 2010

22 Apr
A street in Berlin-Friedrichshain

A street in Berlin-Friedrichshain

This is where my niece lives in Friedrichshain.

This is where my niece lives in Friedrichshain.

DSCN0450 There’s no lift in the building, but a beautiful staircase.

Here I see Carlos, the son of my niece, for the first time.

Here I see Carlos, the son of my niece, for the first time.

This picture was taken some other day with Klaudia and Corinna.

This picture was taken some other day with Klaudia and Corinna.

I took this picture of Peter with my brother Peter Uwe and partner Astrid.

I took this picture of Peter with my brother Peter Uwe and partner Astrid.

This is a street in Berlin-Friedenau where my brother Bodo used to live.

This is a street in Berlin-Friedenau where my brother Bodo used to live.

Peter took this picture on my brother Bodo's 72nd birthday.

Peter took this picture on my brother Bodo’s 72nd birthday.

Some time later. . .

Some time later. . .

 ' ' '  we met Ilse and her friend Erica in Berlin-Friedenau.

‘ ‘ ‘ we met Ilse and her friend Erica in Berlin-Friedenau.

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That same day we went with Ilse to this 'Friedhof'.

That same day we went with Ilse to this ‘Friedhof’.

The ashes of Peter's and Ilse parents and of Ilse's husband are buried here.

The ashes of Peter’s and Ilse parents and of Ilse’s husband are buried here.

This site is in one of the next rows.

This site is in one of the next rows.

What the EU must do now to halt this tragedy on its shores

21 Apr

http://theconversation.com/what-the-eu-must-do-now-to-halt-this-tragedy-on-its-shores-40486?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+21+April+2015+-+2662&utm_content=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+21+April+2015+-+2662+CID_9ce922828832a53bf64a3f1dc27ade0c&utm_source=campaign_monitor&utm_term=What%20the%20EU%20must%20do%20now%20to%20halt%20this%20tragedy%20on%20its%20shores

“How much is a human life worth? How many more people have to die to generate enough momentum for Europe to intervene? Unfortunately these are not rhetorical questions. More than 1,500 people have drowned or gone missing in the Mediterranean on their way from North Africa since the start of 2015.

Many Europeans are wondering how much longer Europe can ignore the tragedy unfolding on its doorstep while politicians and policy makers weigh up the political and economic cost of saving lives at sea.

. . . . . .   ”

Please go to the above link to read more about what Nando says about the tragedy on Europe’s shores.

How do you protect people?

21 Apr

How do you protect people in times of war and upheaval? The German magazine DER SPIEGEL published an opinion piece by Maximilian Popp on this subject. I think the so called “first world” faces a huge problem with more and more displaced people from zones of war and upheaval seeking asylum and a better life. What can humanely be done? How can we suppose that a certain percentage of human beings can be just ignored and left to drown or be killed in zones of  terrible upheavals?

http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/opinion-europe-should-protect-people-not-borders-a-1029594.html