Imagine you live in a historic German village. It’s 1906 and a Prussian captain shows up in your town hall. The captain explains that he’s been sent by the government to run the things, so you tidy villagers hand over the keys to the city. The captain goes immediately to the treasury and asks not to be disturbed for half an hour. He leaves town directly thereafter with the entire contents of the treasury. Of course, it turns out this was no Prussian officer. He was an unemployed factory worker in a costume, and you just gullibly lost everything to him. Such a mortification in America might be hushed up and never spoken of again. But in the village of Köpenick, this guy is a hero. The former treasury room in the town hall is now a shrine devoted to this exploit, and a bronze statue of the Captain of Köpenick stands proudly outside the building.
Köpenick is only a 15 minute bike ride from Jürgen and Martina’s. We visited there a couple days ago where we learned this hysterical story. Köpenick town hall is also where Jürgen and Martina got married, six months after they met.