10 July 2015

Published July 8, 2015 by rochellewisoff

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The following photo is the PHOTO PROMPT. Does it tell you a story? 

PHOTO PROMPT © Stephen Baum

PHOTO PROMPT © Stephen Baum

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Genre: Historical Fiction

Word Count: 100


            “Hurry, Annika.” Vati whispered, glanced over his shoulder at the border guards and pulled me by the hand down Bernauer Strasse. 

            “What about Fritz?”

            “Forget him!”  

            Blinded by tears, I stumbled into a crowded building once used as a toilettenhäuschen where we followed other refugees through a hole in the floor. My father held me as we crawled through the dank tunnel. Within minutes we were lifted out on the other side.

            While others shouted for joy I mourned my loss.

            “Don’t cry, Liebling.” Vati grinned and took a groggy puppy from his coat pocket. “I couldn’t forget him either.”  




More for those who can spare 3:30 extra minutes.

Berlin Wall

123 comments on “10 July 2015

  • It’s hard to believe that people came to accept this division as a way of life, or at least a lot of people did. And ironic that once people were building walls to stop people leaving and now we’re desperate to find ways of stopping them arriving. A heartening note that the missing Fritz turned out to be a puppy, and that he came too, I’m a sucker for a mutt story. Well done, and thanks for the reminder, Rochelle.


    • Dear Sandra,

      I couldn’t resist the “aw” factor this week. And who doesn’t love puppies?

      The truth is that when I came across this bit of history I had to write something. What these university students accomplished amazes me.

      At any rate, I’m pleased you liked my story and dropped in to say so.



      Liked by 1 person

  • I loved this ending. Adults have tragic things happen in their life and usually understand what and why something is happening. Children have to depend on the adults and the extra security blanket for this child was his puppy…it doesn’t erase all the pain, but it sure does wonders for the child!


    • Dear Lucky,

      It’s nice to have a happy ending every so often, isn’t it? Kind of restores our faith in human nature. In this case, the father, had to make snap decisions. The East Berlin refugees weren’t allowed to bring anything but the clothes on their backs. In my mind, Vati drugged the puppy who was small enough to carry in a pocket. But he felt it was safer not to let his daughter know until they were all out of danger.

      Thank you for your lovely comments.




  • Aw….made me smile. Nobody doesn’t love puppies. Nice ending after my visual of getting out through a toilet tunnel. Or should I say “smell sensory”? Nice feel good story. As usual.


    • Dear Phylor,

      I’m pleased that you understood the full extent of what was happening in this story. I hope you took time to click on the link and watch the video.

      Thank you for stopping by and leaving such nice comments.




    • Dear Vinay,

      At the beginning there was a mother in the story, too. I just didn’t have enough words to keep her there. But I believe she still is even if I don’t mention her. And in the end, Annicka is delighted that no one’s left behind.

      Thank you.




    • Dear Björn,

      It does seem that someone’s always building a wall, either to keep someone in or out. Although, I was a child when this particular escape happened, I don’t remember anything about it. I do remember when the Berlin Wall came down though.

      Thank you.




    • Dear Jennifer,

      Thank you for such a sweet compliment. I hope you enjoy my book once you have a chance to read it. It’s a challenge with little ones and I’m amazed at how well you do with writing a good story every week.




  • Wow, you’re terrific at building a story. Of course, you had an excellent photo prompt. i just wrote something up, as people have been visiting my blog today. All the best!


  • A little raye of sunshine in an otherwise very scary situation! I love how you weave your stories from real situations. You’ve a gift!


    • Dear Dale,

      Your comments are always a ray of sunshine to me. You might have guessed by now that I love historical fiction. I feel it’s important to remember that real people, just like us, with the same dreams and emotions were part of history. It’s easy for them to become cardboard cutouts without souls in the history books.

      Thank you for your glowing words.



      Liked by 1 person

  • A wonderful, uplifting story. I love how you surprised us with the true identity of Fritz. Would you believe we had a dog called Fritz once? A big, gangly German short-haired pointer who I brought home from the back room of a local pet shop. He’d been abandoned, I seem to recall. Thanks for a lovely story.


  • Lovey to read a happy ending to such a story – there weren’t nearly enough escapees. My first husband was in Berlin the day the Wall came down and said the scenes were extremely moving. What a waste of human loves that was.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Emily,

      There’s so much that’s difficult to include in a hundred words, like the fact that the refugees weren’t allowed to take anything but the bare necessities. They would have to build new lives on the other side of the wall.

      Thank you.




  • Rochelle,
    I’m glad this ends happily. Even a puppy doesn’t deserve to be in a place like that. It’s so true that for a young kid like that, a dog can be so important. Glad to be back reading other stories.


  • Yay, the puppy is saved. This is quite a story and historical flash for us. I hadn’t heard of this tunnel before. Thanks for the video. Wonderful story as always, Rochelle.


    • Dear Ian,

      I was a bit of a pup myself in ’64. I remember the commercials about the Iron Curtain, but I was blissfully unaware of the escape stories until this week.

      Thank you for phrasing it so nicely. 😉




  • Thanks for that happy ending-twist at the end there. If we feel strongly about a puppy it’s much more hard to imagine leaving behind people. A good historical story… as always


  • Dear Rochelle,

    What a sweet ending to a story about a truly awesome bit of history! My mom went to school with a boy who had escaped East Berlin with some of his family. She often told his story to us as we were growing up, and I recognized the setting for this story of yours immediately as a result. In 1970, my mom traveled through Checkpoint Charlie on a college tour, and her best friend was made to disembark due to a difference in the signatures on her passport and visa. Scary times indeed. Times when one needs the comfort of a sweet little puppy!

    Marie Gail


    • Dear Marie Gail,

      It was fun strewing the clues along the path without being overt. I’d hoped that my readers would understand and it seems they have. 😉 I have to admit that this story provided me with an unexpected education.

      I’m glad the muse provided Fritz for comfort.

      Thank you and shalom,


      Liked by 1 person

  • I’m so glad it ended well. So many died at the fences and the wall. Part of my family lived in Eastern Germany and when visiting, we got a glimpse of the suppression they were under. I can’t even begin to say on how many levels I love this story, one being the german terms you use correctly, which is rare. BTW there is a german movie about the tunnel, but I doubt that it is available internationally.


  • Enjoyed the juxtaposition of the serious history lesson and sweet puppy.
    Have just read stunning first novel set before and after the fall of the wall – mythical tunnel escapes figure in this plot too. It’s well worth a read.
    (The Leipzig Affair by Fiona Ritoul.)


  • First, Rochelle, wow! Your numbers seem to be growing every week! That’s awesome!

    Such a lovely, meaningful story, Rochelle. So many times these bitter sweet moments played out, and continue to play out, in history… I’m reading The Boys In the Boat, and really thinking a lot about WWII and all that took place in Europe. You always tap into a perfect balance of history and storytelling. Nice job! Shalom, friend.


    • Dear Dawn,

      I’m glad you found the time in you planning and packing to stop by for a read. Your comments mean a lot. I think this story might go down as a personal favorite, too.

      I’m pretty amazed at the numbers, too. 😉

      Happy Grammy-ing.



      Liked by 1 person

  • Hello, I think I’ve done what should be done although I didn’t mange to add the blue frog link. I’ll try to add that for this weeks challenge. This is fun!!


  • Danny James, above, is right. You do set the bar high, Rochelle! I’m glad that Fritz wasn’t wasn’t left behind (you had me worried). You always pack so much information into your one hundred words. BTW, I remember the Berlin wall, but not the story of the tunnelers. I guess at 11 I was to young to take notice. I’m so glad you shared it!


    • Dear Linda,

      Looks like we’re the same age. 😉 I turned 11 in 1964. This story was too good to pass up. Ordinary people doing extraordinary things in desperate times. Gotta love it.

      Thank you for such high praise.



      Liked by 1 person

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