My favourite uncle, who was also my godfather, worked for a long time as an electrician at Krupp Koppers and later as a caretaker at the bishop’s evening school in Essen.
Uncle Addi was actually called Adolf, but was only called Addi by everyone. Perhaps in order not to have anything in common with the better known other Adolf, who had led Germany into the Second World War.
When Uncle Addi visited us, the smoke of his cigarettes from the kitchen penetrated the whole house and I was glad that he was there.
Since he was very skilled in crafts, he was always happy to help when there was a need. As far as I can remember, craftsmen were never contracted by us. There was always a good soul who helped us. In return my Dad made tax returns, arranged jobs and found free beds in nursing homes, where there were actually none. One hand washes the other…
In the Summer of 1974 the football World Championship took place… and Germany made it to the final against the Netherlands on 7.7.1974. At the same day it was my Mum’s 40th birthday.
The occasion was special enough to see the game with Uncle Addi and his family in the Bischöfliches Abendgymnasium, because…. there really was already a colour TV!! Until then we also had a television at home, but black and white… and of course without remote control. Which wasn’t a big problem with only three channels. Zapping had not yet been invented… and the daily TV program was listed in the weekly TV magazine.
We won the game 2:1 and actually became World Champions. And that also against the eternal football enemy and neighbour Holland.
I don’t remember too much of the details of the match. But I do remember how we were all happy… and what an impression the colour TV made on me.
Since then many technical innovations have been invented: the wireless telephone, the fax, flat screens and projectors of every size, computers and laptops for everyone, the internet and of course smartphones.
And I’m very curious to see what else may come… and when we’ll be world champions again next time.