Britta's Letters from (and sometimes about) Berlin

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Safe in Safes

Britta Huegel


Dear You
of course you were right in your last letter to hint that all these Chinese Teahouse columns and statues are gilded, and not pure gold. If they were, they wouldn't stand there for long - we have a big problem these months with thieves that come and brazenly steal copper wires or tracks of the S-Bahn - and then people stand at the underground station and freeze, waiting for the trains that will not come... 
I grinned at your remark about the political farce concerning the vast amounts of German gold that are stored in foreign countries: at least the Americans allowed the members of the German parliament to enter the vaults of the bank, but denied them their wish to look at it - and the Banque-de-France downright denied even the first step. 
Why is the Christian Democratic Union so distrustful? 109 million ounces of German gold, we are assured, lie safely, I repeat: safely! in the safes (sic) of America and France and Great Britain. Does it matter that the politicians are not allowed to see it? 
Hony soit qui mal y pense - and if you do, my dear, you may join the new public campain "Bring our gold back home!"
Come to think of it: maybe they already have. 
And put it secretly into a very safe place. :-) 


Britta Huegel

17 comments:

  1. Hello Britta:
    We do not have to remind you, of that we are certain, that "all that glisters is not gold"! Perish the thought that all those millions of ounces lying in foreign vaults are not the real thing at all!!

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    1. Dear Jane and Lance,
      hehehe - I will have no sleepless night about that! In a comic radio spot an old guy suggested: "Our father painted lead bars with gold foil" - but really: cash isn't cash any longer either, but only a virtual idea - so they can "print" billions and billions - and spend it... :-)

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  2. How safe are secrets, my dear Britta, gilded or gold? That is the question ...

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    1. Dear Suze,
      did I mention my 'secret project'?? A friend of mine asked eagerly: "What IS your secret project?" and I said: "Well - what do you think means the word 'secret'?" I will see if my project is gilded or gold (in about 3 years time :-)

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  3. There is a great deal of copper theft here as well. I don't understand it as the price is not that high -- the equipment they damage is worth more than what they get for the small amount of copper ripped out.

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    1. Dear Janet,
      I think that it is incredibly selfish to risk the life of many people (which is the case in nicking parts of rails etc). Intersting that you have those thefts too!

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  4. Even in Maine, summer residents store aluminum and copper docks in locked sheds for the winter. Thieves abound. Perhaps if they were made of pure gold the weight would deter the crooks? It's an awful lot to sling over the back. ;)

    (Americans are masters of tease.)

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    1. Dear Jayne,
      what I understand is that Maine is normally a country where you can trust each other, but to let a summer resident open would be daft in any county.
      IF I were easily prone to worry (I hope I am not), your last remark in parentheses COULD make me uneasy about alledged gold in certain vaults - there is a proverb “You don't put robbers to work in a bank” - but really: I am not disquiet. :-)

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  5. What an interesting thought!
    Amazing that people steal rail tracks. They must be very desperate and inconsiderate thieves!
    x

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  6. Dear Penny,
    thank you! And those thieves: they are either very desperate, or - as Onslow in 'Keeping up Appearances' puts it: bone-idle. Now security forces are installed - but that is eyewash, because impossible for those long track network.

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  7. Dear Britta,
    I'm afraid to say that it happens all over the world ......... they even take the lead off of church roofs here !!!! XXXX

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  8. Dear Jacquelin,
    to take the tiles of a church roof - brazen! I think they must work at night - otherwise how can they do it??

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  9. Astonishing to me that the US is seen as a safe place for Germany's gold. That must be a turnabout of some sorts, don't you think?

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  10. Dear Sue,
    well - 133 billions Euro - this is the worth of the 45 percent of German gold - are in New York. "Only 1036 tons are in Germany. One reason (Sue, I do not invent that!) is given by Bundesbank-Vorstand Carl-Ludwig Thiele: "They do not ask fees for safe-keeping." He is very angry that some German politicians are so distrustful - the discussion is grotesque, he says.

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  11. Herr Thiele perhaps has not heard of the "fiscal cliff" directly ahead of the American economy train. That gold could be mighty tempting to politicians wanting to avoid the wrath of their constituents. There has to be more honor among the train track thieves than here in our political system. The old proverb about not putting the fox in charge of the hen house comes to mind:)

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  12. Dear Walk2write,
    well, well -- you made me laugh. Thought of Thurber's new version of 'Little Red Ridinghood' (the moral especially - but that is another story :-)

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  13. Purchasing a home safe is a very wise investment for peace of mind knowing that your valuables are being kept safe even in case of a fire at your house.
    Safes in NYC

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