Left bed

Der Knast

In British English slang this means, the can, slammer, klink or to be in the jug. In official English it means prison. In German this is Das Gefängnis. I went there a couple of weekends ago without knowing it!

I went to a SPD party meeting called a Klausurtagung = a closed meeting. It was rather like a day long retreat where you chose to go into a group to discuss particular topics. The group I joined discussed facilities in the city for disabled people.

I mentioned this to some of the Oldie SPD Gang and last week one of them brought a newspaper report. The building complex where the SPD meeting took place used to be a prison. It is in Rummelsburg which is an area on the River Spree. A nice area for a prison.

The prison was built in the 1880s after Germany was created. It contained many workhouses where prisoners worked/made things. This continued after the creation of the DDR in 1949. The difference was that the prisoners produced things, or provided a service, for companies in West Germany. They made things for sale to the ‘Capitalist’ enemy!

It was closed after re-unification in 1989-90. It was later rebuilt as a complex of luxury flats for sale with a view onto the water, trees and grass area along the river.