Hamburg – my city

I have a very personal relationship with Hamburg. More precisely to Altona and St. Pauli. The two who never wanted to be my parents met here. And neither were they. I grew up with the two of them who wanted to be my parents. And it was.

And so I did not grow up where my real origin was, but much further south. And yet Hamburg already had something magical for me when I was just going to school. Incidentally, without ever having been there. But inside I heard the muffled honking of the ships, the hustle and bustle in the harbors or on the quay. My longing for this place was so great when I didn’t even know what connection I had with Altona and St. Pauli.

He was a steward on the Hanseatic, she worked in a consumer. Yes, this longing must come from him. The longing for the sea. To a distance. To port. I made my career pretty early, working all over Europe, staying in rather expensive hotels. But there was something that made me throw it all away. To finally follow my longing. My longing for the sea.

Since then, I’ve been drawn to the city again and again, more precisely to Altona and St. Pauli. And then I stand on the quay and have these pictures in front of me. From the freighters. The crusaders. From the moorers and the fish sellers. I hear the lively talk, the horn of the ship, the metallic noise of the elevated railway and the crash of the waves against the pier. All these pictures I see in black and white. In gray weather. Yes, Hamburg is gray. And maybe it’s the most beautiful gray in my life.

So I do not miss the opportunity to take a day ticket from the HVV, as I do on every trip to Hamburg, to get on one of these hectic HAPAG ferries that land and leave again and maybe for a moment to see the world around me with their eyes see who didn’t want me.

Melancholy, port romance, St. Pauli stories. No matter how. I go up. Hold my face in the cool wind and feel at home for a moment. I smile. Happy to have parents who wanted to. And also were allowed to. Happy to have a place that welcomes me. And I gladly accept it as my inner home.

Today Hamburg is gray again. Like in my dreams. Hamburg. My city.

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