I've been lucky enough to have been awarded a prize for my life's work by a public radio station in Bremen. I'm enormously flattered and very grateful. But I'm also pretty jumpy.
I haven't spoken in public for over 10 years. And the last time I went to Germany was in 2004 when, during my stay, there was a huge terrorist attack on Madrid's railway. Of course this put German security forces on full alert at stations and airports. From my point of view, especially airports. At Munich airport, when leaving for home, I was searched 4 times and taken off the plane by a man with a gun. All because my passport is in a middle-eastern name. The flight was held up for over an hour and when I was allowed back on the plane I was greeted by waves of anger and frustration. Which I understood well. I too am less than enthusiastic about sitting uncomfortably on a plane that's going nowhere.
History can't repeat itself, can it? All the same I'd politely like to ask those responsible to suspend terrorist activity till I leave Germany next week.
This is just a tad ironic because there are some who would say that since I joined Extinction Rebellion I have been responsible for countless travel delays and disruptions. Also, as someone aware of the huge carbon cost of flying, I shouldn't be flying at all. Well, fair point. But did I mention I've won a prize? That only happens once in a blue moon. And I really, really want to meet the people who are giving it to me. So, jumpy or not, I'm going.