Travel Berlin: Jump onto the Unchartered Train to Pankow and become Part of History

Imagine you live in a country where every politically different thinking resident gets declared a public enemy, and gets a record in his or her personal file, to be from then on disadvantaged in society. This is how life in the GDR was. 

All these years ago the German singer Udo Lindenberg used his songs as a way to fight for a unified Germany. He so wanted to perform in the GDR but was never allowed to. And one of his songs is “Is this the chartered train to Pankow?”

U Bahn Linie 2 Berlin, Pankow
The Chartered Train to Pankow

Honey (Honecker), I think, you’re actually quite relaxed
I know deep inside you, you're actually a Rocker
you secretly like to put on your leather jacket
and lock yourself up on the loo, and listen to West Radio

Sonderzug nach Pankow

Udo Lindenberg gave Erich Honecker indeed a leather jacket, and Erich returned the favour with a shawm (a musical instrument). For his efforts for the understanding between East and West Germany, Udo Lindenberg was awarded the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany in 1989. 

Every time I jump onto the U2 to Pankow, I can’t help but think “Is this the chartered train to Pankow?” And I mean it; it is every single time, no matter how often I use it. Thank you Udo.

Last year on the metro celebrity voices announced the next station, and as you can imagine I was over the moon when Udo Lindenberg announced the next station on the U2. I nearly started to weep, so overwhelming is the fact that now everybody can live together peacefully, and won't get shot at the border. No one high fived each other, there was not even a smile, which is pretty strange, given what has been achieved here.

Today we know there was a true happy ending to this terrible part of history. Berlin, so full of life and excitement. What if you become part of history when in Berlin? Please tweet me your celebratory party photo on the U2 to Pankow and I publish it on The Touristin? Find me here: @DoroLef.

From Berlin with love