"A stroll through Thuringia" – Readings by Jörg-Uwe Albig and Rafael Horzon; A glimpse at Jutta Ditfurth's family archive
"The city is like a beast, building and construction is like a force of nature, a raging river." Jörg-Uwe Albig was standing there, in a Thuringian Field between Gelmeroda and Weimar. An amplifier, a microphone, a lorrie crossing, planes approching Erfurt. Seen from above, 150 boutique conference participants must have appeared like a small spec.
Albig read from his new novel (A Love In The Steppe) which will be released in July 2017. The wind was blowing down from Ettersberg and now it was time to come down a bit and talk, strolling through the good old Kirschbachtal. Strollology was invented by founding dean of the Faculty of Design at Bauhaus-University Weimar, Lucius Burckhardt. It's all about beginnings, an approach towards topics and issues with an open mind.
On a second break, Rafael Horzon took the stage and read a few lines from his early unknown novels. He was introduced as the "most radical modern thinker" by Holm Friebe. It was brief, it was pleaseant, it set the mood right for the crowd to move on down to the Milchhof area. Thuringian Bratwurst was on the menu there.
End of day 1 – back to the beast again: Jutta Ditfurth, early founding member of Die Grünen in Germany, entered the stage at Nivre Studio with the words: "I've heard you expect me to tell you fairytales – you'll be shocked." In the following two hours she stepped through the history of her ancestors from Thuringia beginning when she was 39 years old. "The tiny Thuringia was a totally unknown place until the wall fell", she said. Starting to dive deeply into the history of her ancestors: From her great great uncle, a poet and anti-Semite who worked as a propagandist or in Ditfurths words "a modern type of PR for the First World War", to all the other 199 aristocratic relatives providing space for the Freikorps and Stahlhelm in their castles, beating up jews and supporting NSDAP, SS etc. to "the red beast from Brandenstein" – her only relative "who fighted the Nazis – and they fighted him". Jutta Ditfurth got the Carte Blanche with only a single requirement: "Don't try to please anyone." Guess what she didn't do.