Tyssa - and an East-West Wendegeschichte

Tyssa and its surroundings were fortunate in the last war that it was spared by Allied bombing and was therefore considered a safe hinterland. On the other hand, things looked very different in the areas of Germany where the “armories” were located and therefore became targets of the bomber currents. In order to partially protect the civilian population, large families were evacuated to safe areas of the country. In 1943, the Arndt family came to Tyssa with four children from Duisburg, where the “Waldvilla” (T.172) became their second home for the duration of the war.

With Hermann, the eldest son of this family and his sister Ruth, we soon had close friendly relationships until Hermann was recalled as a 17-year-old in 1944 and I as a 16-year-old “1945”. Even through years of war captivity and expulsion from the homeland, we did not cancel our mutual correspondence, until 1950 I was allowed to entertain as a member of the GDR Navy according to regulation no “West contact” more. Hermann could understand this; because in times of the “cold war” it was similar “over there”. Secretly, however, we always hoped that things would have to be “better”. With the turn of 1989 the time had come! After 44 years we met for the first time in Rostock and in May 1990 we went to Tyssa together. However, the journey there started on the border with obstacles, as our chosen border crossing at Peterswald, where we could almost see Tyssa, was not intended to pass through to FRG citizens. So we were forced to make quite a detour via the Zinnwald border crossing, where my friend Hermann as a Westerner still had to pay a handsome “entrance fee”. At the Teplitz – Peterswald bifurcation, we visited the monument worthy of commemoration of the victorious battle of the Austrian allies against Napoleon erected by Kulm in 1813 and were amazed that it was well looked after. Now we continued towards Peterswald until we reached the hamlet of Tyssa. was not intended for the passage of FRG citizens. So we were forced to make quite a detour via the Zinnwald border crossing, where my friend Hermann as a Westerner still had to pay a handsome “entrance fee”. At the Teplitz – Peterswald bifurcation, we visited the monument worthy of commemoration of the victorious battle of the Austrian allies against Napoleon erected by Kulm in 1813 and were amazed that it was well looked after. Now we continued towards Peterswald until we reached the hamlet of Tyssa. was not intended for the passage of FRG citizens. So we were forced to make quite a detour via the Zinnwald border crossing, where my friend Hermann as a Westerner still had to pay a handsome “entrance fee”. At the Teplitz – Peterswald bifurcation, we visited the monument worthy of commemoration of the victorious battle of the Austrian allies against Napoleon erected by Kulm in 1813 and were amazed that it was well looked after. Now we continued towards Peterswald until we reached the hamlet of Tyssa. We visited the worthy monument erected by Kulm in memory of the victorious battle of the Austrian allies against Napoleon in 1813 and were amazed that it was so well maintained. Now we continued towards Peterswald until we reached the hamlet of Tyssa. We visited the worthy monument erected by Kulm in memory of the victorious battle of the Austrian allies against Napoleon in 1813 and were amazed that it was so well maintained. Now we continued towards Peterswald until we reached the hamlet of Tyssa.

If I have visited our old hometown a few times after the expulsion, each time it touches a feeling that can not be described. One part is pleased to see the old homeland again, in which one could spend the entire youth carefree, on the other hand one is depressed to experience that of the whole place only the “outer facade” is left. The invigorating core, its lovable people are scattered in all directions. It is a good thing that at least the unique natural monument, the Tyssaer Walls, has been preserved in its old beauty.

The first visit to the village was to the cemetery, where the sister of my friend Hermann, who died in May 1945 as a 16-year-old, was buried. Unfortunately, no gravestone reminded of her final resting place, where we could drop our flower greeting. Then we went to the forest villa, where the family Arndt had been staying for three years. However, we were only able to find them after a long search, since after 44 years they kept a dense forest secret. It was a strange feeling to stand in front of the house, where we both said goodbye to each other as young guys last time in 1945 and now had to experience a very different tyssa as “grandfathers”. Now the Czech forester has pitched his quarters in the Waldvilla, while the former forester’s lodge of the forester Renger, where I was employed as a forestry apprentice, slumbering as an empty ruin with nailed windows and doors. Before my parents’ home (T.375), which now serves as a retirement home, a small “minute of silence” was inserted, before we started back to march again. At the sight of the imposing walls of Tyssa, we liked to remember the youthful pranks we had there together in a beautiful landscape until fate spread to all winds in 1945 and later separated a border.

One can imagine that the reunion of two friends after four decades and, moreover, the visit to Tyssa, was a lasting experience for us, where the story of shared experiences did not end.