Rakete witnessed what he believes might have been Bowie’s first ever encounter with Berlin, when he arrived on a train in the mid-1970s. The word had got out among Bowie fans that he was stopping at Zoo Station, and Rakete, an eager young photo- reporter, was there. “Out of the train stepped this polite young man, who introduced the small crowd to his fellow passengers, an old couple who had no idea who he was,” recalls Rakete. “He said ‘meet Mr and Mrs Schulze, who I’ve just given my vitamin pills in return for their cigarettes.’”
So it was, perhaps, that the love affair began.
Berliners are immensely flattered that Bowie has now reignited the flame with Where Are We Now?, lending as it does poetic status to the places mentioned in the lyrics and reminding the city just how much it has changed.
“You feel the real sense of homesickness he has for Berlin and the extent to which he felt at home here,” Haag says.