It’s long time I have not written news. Lot of things happened and lot are still happening. The camp is changing day by day, but in a way it is always the same.
During these day there is a lot of attention about the free field in Cuvry Straße, in the last weeks some important Berlin newspaper made big articles about the situation of the camp, and it was not good advertisement, not at all. The main topic and argumentation was describing FreeCuvry as the new slum of Kreuzberg, the sign of a dangerous beginning for Berlin, the beginning of a out-of-controll urbanization.
Or maybe it’s just started the marketing process that will bring till the building of these 250 luxury apartments for just hip rich people. And which better way than create such a bad image of Cuvry using medias and newspapers, maybe passing some bag of money just under the desk of some journalists.
“Die Slum von Kreuzberg: Das ist nicht Bombay, das ist Berlin”
So they wrote.
And what can we answer? It is true. FreeCuvry has the aspect of a slum, maybe it is, but of course it’s very easy to write that it’s just a mountain of garbage lived by people who spend their day just drinking and taking drug. It’s very easy to spend just half an hour to take some pictures and pretend to now how the life in Cuvry is going.
What is not easy is to open the eyes and realize that the world is changing and what happens in city like Bombay, or Nairobi, or other cities in Africa, Asia or South America is regarding not just a limited area around there but all the world, included Europe and Berlin.
I don’t pretend to know how the world is going, and I don’t want to say if urban events like FreeCuvry are more or less right, neither justifying them.
What I want to do is write my point of view, and I’m sure it has much more value than what someone who only spent either one hour or one day in Cuvry may have to say.
This is because my eyes are watching from inside for over a year.
So please just give me the possibility to bring you a little bit closer to the reality in FreeCuvry.
It’s clear to everybody that the main reason of the origin of places like FreeCuvry is that the majority of the people can not anymore pay a rent for a house, and the price of the rent is madly increasing in Berlin for the gentrification.
It’s also true that the majority of the people who live in FreeCuvry have no job and live just collecting bottles, playing or asking for money in the street. But when I watch them and I go to work every morning, doing my fucking internship for 3€ a hour, I ask myself where this idea of happiness, beside an image of a nice apartment, a fix shitty job that give you an illusion of economic stability, comes from. I mean, are you sure this is the way to be happy? And are you sure this is your way to be happy or the society put it inside your brain to convince you it’s the best one?
There is a lot of ways to live, I just think people need to take a look around before give hasty judgments.
The garbage in Cuvry…
The first time when Yuki and me came to FreeCuvry there was a mountain of garbage near the entrance of Schlesisches Straße, it was so much that we couldn’t explain how the habitants managed to create such a big mess. When the spring arrived and the snow was definitely gone ( last winter was really long, snowing until half april!) the habitants of Cuvry started to cleaning the camp and around their houses, putting all the garbage over the mountain, that grew and grew till get huge. I saw also lot of people from outside throwing stuff on the mountain. I remember, I had an argument with one polish guy for that, I couldn’t understand how they made so much garbage, and every kind of different stuff, from furnitures to clothes.
Now, after one year, I know it.
The garbage in FreeCuvry is not just the garbage of its habitants because you can be sure the people in Cuvry make much less garbage in their house than all the other people who live in normal apartments. This garbage comes mainly from the summer camping, cause in summer people come in Cuvry, put their tents and stay for the beautiful season, and after they go away, leaving all their shitty stuff there, and every summer it’s the same story.
Let’s take Tommaso as an example: he collected a huge quantity of stuff for all the summer, around our house and in the place where he should have built his house (thing that he’s never done), then when the winter arrived he just moved, without saying or bringing with him anything. So Lukas and other people from Cuvry had to clean Tommaso mess. It needed more than two weeks of work and two trucks to bring aways all that stuff.
So people come, make shit and go away. And the shit stays in FreeCuvry.
This why the garbage.
And this is just a little gaze on the real FreeCuvry.
I continue to say, if you want and if you can just come to take a closer look.
I saw so many journalists coming, moving in the camp like it was a war camp and in a moment somebody could attempt on their life…funny image of wimp and stupid people who have no idea what FreeCuvry is. There is nothing to be afraid.
The only thing you need to be safe here is respect, if you respect the people, the place and yourself you are always welcome in FreeCuvry.
so they threw away all tommaso’s stuff?? there was some of my stuff i forgot there, just a couple of things, like my precious pillow. i asked him to protect it like if it was his own life (i was going to take it back soon) but i guess his breakfast wine is more important to him. i wonder if he’s ok, he disappeared and i haven’t heard of him..
By the way, we don’t know each-other but i guess you are Chiara. I am Nene and I’m italian, i lived in cuvry for 3 months. Nice to meet you! I like what you and Yuki are writing on here. And your house is lovely. I spent a lot of time there with Tommaso, Adam, Sascha.. I will come back in June but i will not live there, I’ll come to say hi though. cheers
ciao Nene, piacere di conoscerti!
mi dispiace, tutta la roba di tommaso è andata buttata via, lui ha preso con sè solo la sua chitarra.
comunque credo stia bene, l’inverno in cuvry è troppo duro per lui, anche perché alla fine non aveva costruito una casa dove ripararsi adeguatamente. l’ultima volta che l’ho visto è stato a natale e aveva un bell’aspetto e qualche chilo in più. da allora non ho più sue notizie.
appena sei a berlino passa qui a trovarci, ci farebbe piacere conoscerti di persona.
a presto. ciaooo
I hope you will see this message even after Cuvry has gone. I had just this summer gotten to know your place and was looking forward to more visits. I am sorry that the city destroyed your home. Where did you all go? Can I find your community of friends again?