BERLIN (AP) — The walls of the Bornholmer Huette pub were last painted in 1973, a light beige that has gradually cracked and darkened into a caramel brown from decades of cigarette smoke.
The "Huette," as regulars call it, has been in Matthias Gehrhus' family since 1954 and he doesn't plan on changing it any time soon. Its Spartan styling recalls the days when it was a meeting place in communist East Berlin's Prenzlauer Berg neighborhood, somewhere you'd go to catch up with an old friend over a cheap beer.
Gehrhus, 50, was born into that world and doesn't want it back. But he also understands the feelings of many former East Germans that, 30 years after the Berlin Wall fell and communism collapsed, not everything has improved.
"It was a simple life the