On summer 2002 I've had my first holiday paid with my own money made working in an estate agency.
Destination Berlin. Yeah! Ja!
Stefania a friend of a friend of mine had given me the keys of her house in Fredrichshain, the quarter where former medium hyerarchies of the communist DDR used to live. A quarter of nice half restored buildings with green courtyards and wooden stairs. In Fredrichshain nobody seemed to speak English, only German and Russian. Great, isn't it?
I thought to find at least a hundred people in Stefania's apartment because she had told me that the house was something like an "artistic merry go-round community" while I had found no one there. Four rooms of one's own.
There were shelves full of books in the living room. One title has immediately attracted me: The Tin Drum.
Therefore, I've spent two wonderful weeks visiting Berlin and reading the Tin Drum while at home. Perhaps that's why I've got a very good memory of the book. It was astonishing, I mean the way in which the difficult life in Danzig during World War II is powerfully described here.
And what else to say about Oscar, the main protagonist of The Tin Drum? I think he's one of the most important characters of the whole European literature. His anger toward the whole society is expressed in the best way possible by Grass.
This book had literally kidnapped me.