Ijon Tichy, Phileas Fogg, James T. Kirk

Karsten Häcker, Head of Corporate IT

What do the three have to do with my November 9th?

These are the protagonists who accompanied and inspired me long before November 9, 1989 – both in print and in moving images. They complemented the glamorous picture books with fascinating landscapes that were real yet so far away – which lined the shelves of my parents’ library.

After November 9, 1989, I was able to do everything my three protagonists could.
Karsten Häcker Head of the IT Department

But back to my question.

Tichy, Fogg, and Kirk are travelers. Regardless of whether on land or through space and time; the boundaries are fluid. Their creators (Lem, Verne, Roddenberry) gave them all a license to travel. On November 9, 1989, I was able to catch up with my heroes – I too obtained a license to travel. From blue to green to red (see image). Note: Even though in American movies the good guys “wore” blue and the baddies red, I don’t think this had a political implication.

But back to my question.

The license to travel, the “Reisepass” or passport – let’s break down this German compound noun: 

Reise (1): to go somewhere.

Pass: something one can cross; a summit with a view onto something new; at the same time, it is possible to look back on something familiar ... two views – two worlds – with all their consequences. 

Reise (2): to go somewhere... for me, this still means experiencing landscapes and people; to linger in a different, unfamiliar place, to live and learn...

But back to my question.

After November 9, 1989, I was able to do everything my three protagonists could; travel around the planet or through time and space to far-off galaxies (unfortunately, I’m not allowed to report about everything here).

I would like to protect myself with the following disclaimer: Traveling can be addictive and promotes your mental health.😊