It’s 1969 and I’m in the woods looking for Germans along with my nine year old buddies helping our friend Tom celebrate a birthday before the advent of chuckie cheese. He wanted to play war games after cake and ice cream so we drifted through the timber firing our fingers like browning automatic rifles at anything suspicious. There’s something brooding and mysterious about Germany, but also something beautiful and majestic, noble and precise. Today I go to Hamburg and the Rhine river valley and Bavaria, to castles and 800 year old villages, pretzels and wienersnitzel…and in the midst of the pock mark scars that still frame beautiful cityscape a countryside, I’ll remember the war games of my youth and try to not shoot anyone with my index finger and remember the real war that happened before i was born but is repeated daily in the minds of many old faithful patriots.

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