The district’s disability officer, Max Mayer, sounds the alarm. Because sometimes disabled people who are exempt from the mask requirement are exposed to rude comments and derogatory looks when they enter a shop without mouth and nose covering. “It’s very uncomfortable and discriminatory for those affected,” says Mayer.
There are a number of illnesses that make wearing protective masks unreasonable or even impossible. According to Mayer, this applies, for example, to people with impaired lung function, who have difficulty breathing anyway, and people with severe multiple disabilities who may be dependent on an oxygen device in everyday life.
Mayer also knows about the problems that the mask requirement for the deaf and hearing impaired brings with it. Because they can no longer read what has been said from their lips. That makes communication extremely difficult. “For the hard of hearing this is currently a constant issue in everyday life,” reports the 29-year-old. For example, when they are standing at the till and the cashier, who wears a mask herself, says the price, they are often at a loss. To make matters worse, according to Mayer, you can hardly recognize and read the facial expressions on the other person’s face because of the mask. In this context, the disability officer also points out that mouth and nose protection can be removed if it is used to communicate with the hearing impaired.
There is no doubt that masks are useful and necessary. Protect your fellow human beings and yourself from the danger of the coronavirus. Nevertheless, Mayer once again expressly asks for consideration for those people who are exempt from the duty. They also include people with certain mental illnesses. According to Mayer, masks can trigger panic attacks in them. The mouthguard can become a real torture, act as a trigger and provoke emotional reactions such as fear, indignation or anger in the person concerned.
The doctor alone is responsible for an exemption from the general mask requirement in shops, department stores, on platforms or squares. It is his responsibility to issue a certificate to those affected. It is important that the reason for the exemption is also noted on the certificate. There are already some court rulings on this. If this information is missing, the credibility of the liberation can be questioned.
In his work as a disability officer, however, Max Mayer made the experience that it is helpful if those affected have their medical certificate to hand when they enter a shop. Because irritations are often based on misunderstandings.
Several raised wooden houses, which are reminiscent of the 6,000-year-old pile dwellings in front of the rose island and are supposed to cover the hotel complex behind: The new design for the hotel “Forsthaus am See” in Possenhofen impressed the Pöcking local council on Thursday. The committee approved the plans with 15 to four votes. The procedure for a project-related development and development plan is initiated. The Greens, however, fear that the traffic chaos will increase with the hotel expansion. They all voted against it.
The hotel was built in the 1970s and enjoyed a good reputation with guests. However, since the renovation of the only 22 rooms was unprofitable, it was closed in 2016. The restaurant, in which many celebrities celebrated with landlord Otto Robl in the 1980s and 1990s, is still temporarily leased until the stock is torn down. His daughter Eva Robl had already tried to expand in 2013. According to a feasibility study commissioned by her, a four-star hotel can only be operated economically with 120 rooms or more. 90 to 100 rooms are planned. In 2018, the design by an architectural office in Bolzano was approved. Then there was a change of architect and the Pöckinger WSM team around Florian Wiesler had the idea of arranging the hotel as a “hut village”. The wooden houses with the restaurants and beer garden are located in the shore zone. The three to four-story saddle roof buildings for the hotel operation with wellness area are planned in the forest on the slope. The removal from the nature reserve of 8,000 square meters had already been advocated in the earlier draft. According to Wiesler, an additional 2,000 square meters are now required. As Schnitzler emphasized, however, appropriate forest compensation areas must be made available elsewhere. The rest of the compensation area will be created with the renaturation of the stream at the property boundary. Since Feldafing is the owner of this brook, the consent of the neighboring community is required.
In the opinion of Mayor Rainer Schnitzler, the design tells a story with its orientation towards the pile dwellings. It is “a special hotel for a special place”. His Vice Albert Luppart (PWG) was also full of praise. Such a hotel complex in this exposed location is “Champions League” and “a win for Lake Starnberg,” he said. The use of natural materials and the sustainable energy concept were recognized in unison. Despite the intervention in the landscape protection area, the design was also approved by the Greens. However, they criticized the additional traffic load caused by the hotel expansion. “Is a conference hotel still up to date in times of Corona?” Asked Sabine Stolicka (Greens).
According to the architect Florian Wiesler, conferences only make up a small part of the concept. A hotel in this location is especially booked for weddings, he said. He also did not share Simone Greve (Greve’s) concerns that too little parking space was available. 135 parking spaces are planned, although according to Wiesler only 97 are required. Schnitzler pointed to the traffic census from 2019, according to which the chaos is limited to just a few summer days per year. According to the report, the hotel traffic increases by around 20 vehicles per hour. It is manageable, the paper says. The Koeniginstrasse is a dead end and has no turning point. According to the traffic expert’s proposal, the problem of traffic searching for a parking space could be defused via electronic display boards. Drivers could be informed on the state road when all parking spaces are occupied.
During the defusing on Friday, the Lindau Autobahn will be completely closed. The police asked the employees of the industrial park not to come to work. 70 Gilchingers also have to leave their homes by eight o’clock.
Thursday, November 19, 9:20 p.m .: The police fear traffic chaos if the Lindau autobahn is completely closed on Friday from 10 a.m. to defuse the bomb. According to new information, traffic will be diverted to Munich in Oberpfaffenhofen and to Lindau in Gilching-Argelsried. This should “undoubtedly represent the most serious turning point,” said a police report. In Gilching and Weßling “considerable traffic obstructions” are to be expected.
The evacuation within the security zone will start at 8 a.m. In addition to the companies at the Oberpfaffenhofen special airport, the residents of Lärchenweg, Flugplatzstraße and Neubruchweg in Neugilching are also affected, according to new information from the police. They have to leave their homes. Air traffic will be suspended during the defusing process.
Thursday, November 19, 8 p.m .: An attentive excavator driver discovered a 250 kilogram US bomb from the Second World War while working on the sewer on Thursday afternoon, according to the police at the special airport in Oberpfaffenhofen, and immediately sounded the alarm. The site is said to be ten meters in front of a fence outside the airport area near Friedrichshafener Strasse.
According to the police, it is planned that the bomb will be defused by a demolition master this Friday at 11 a.m. For security reasons, a radius of around 500 meters would have to be cleared, which is why the Lindau motorway A 96 will be completely closed in both directions between the Wörthsee and Gilching-Argelsried junctions between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.
In addition, the Asto-Park industrial area on Friedrichshafener Strasse with around 650 employees was affected by the evacuation, so company employees should not come to work on Friday morning, the police said. In addition, around 70 residents of Flugplatzstrasse and Weichselbaumer Strasse in Neugilching would have to leave their houses or apartments, the police announced.
Those who manage to do that can consider themselves lucky: The married couple Barbara van Benthem and Eberhard Köstler have succeeded in turning their passion into a profession. The two antiquarians specialize in the sale of autographs, handwritten letters from well-known personalities. This year they can already celebrate their 20th company anniversary in Tutzing.
“Each piece is only available once, and they all give an insight into the writer’s personality,” says Köstler. His wife illustrates this with an example: “You can still read as many books about Bertolt Brecht and women, but if you get a letter from him to the Danish actress Ruth Berlau, you can read what you read in the biography has to understand. ” It is the little glimpses into the private lives of writers, painters and composers that make the couple’s work so exciting. Two trackers on a discovery tour. “You get nice surprises every day,” says the 57-year-old.
The couple do not want to talk about work in connection with their job anyway. “It’s no job at all,” protests the 63-year-old Köstler promptly. A purchase at 10 p.m., that can happen. And recently they talked shop for a whole weekend about whether Arnold Schönberg had feelings of inferiority or not. The idea had occurred to them through Schönberg’s correspondence in connection with a concert in honor of Albert Einstein in New York’s Carnegie Hall.
Barbara van Benthem’s career has been quite straightforward. She comes from Münster and studied German, English and linguistics after graduating from high school. In the run-up to her doctorate, she worked in an antiquarian bookshop. “That was great,” she enthuses today. She did the press work for the Association of German Antiquaries and met her future husband, Eberhard Köstler, who was chairman of the association at the time. That was in 2002 at the trade fair in Stuttgart at the Brockhaus stand.
Köstler is a true Bavarian, born in Herrsching and mostly raised in Tutzing. He studied literature and history in Munich. During school and university he worked in the Tutzinger Musikantiquariat, then in a book and art auction house in Munich. In 2000 he made the decision: “Now you have to set the course” and started his own business. “So I can take my nap again,” he jokes. His boss had a different thesis at the time: he was certain that Köstler had specialized in autographs so that he no longer had to carry heavy boxes. Autograph dealers are rare. “What am I?” with Robert Lembke, “every pig is full,” believes Köstler.
There is a box on the piano stool in the Tutzing couple’s dining room. “Unknown flying objects” is what they call boxes like this one with letters and manuscripts, the authors of which they first have to examine. Cardboard boxes of this kind are rare and come from either collections, bequests or archives. If you are lucky, you will find one or the other exciting rarity – like here, for example, a letter from Cosima Wagner. Usually, however, Köstler and van Benthem buy very specifically – mostly for resale, but sometimes they also act as intermediaries.
For almost 20 years now, the two have been tinkering with work rooms in their Tutzing private house, deciphering handwriting, reconstructing careers, backgrounds, relationships and immersing themselves in other lives. For example, there was an undated letter from Bertolt Brecht to his school friend, the German-Austrian set designer Caspar Neher. During their research, the couple discovered that this was Brecht’s first letter after his return to Berlin from exile. “Our customers often do not have that much time to decipher letter by letter,” says Köstler.
The two have long been running their mail order business together. Once the content of a letter has been decrypted, it is prepared for the customer and described in detail on acid-free paper. Despite their specialist knowledge, all of this is only possible because the two antiquarians have an extensive specialist library – not at home in their house, of course, but a few streets away, near the Tutzing Church of St. Joseph.
Anyone who thinks they can visit the second-hand bookshop is wrong. It’s not a real shop with opening times, although the works are meticulously sorted and lined up on the floor-to-ceiling shelves to invite you to browse. However, the roughly 10,000 alphabetically ordered volumes serve the couple exclusively as reference works for research. “We also guarantee the authenticity of the documents for life,” says van Benthem. “Nothing leaves the house unexplored.”
The couple call this “ennobling”. It goes without saying that the two of them do not keep all valuable documents in their own house, but keep them safe in the bank vault. Once a letter from Thomas Mann, Bertolt Brecht, Franz Liszt, Richard Wagner, Lyonel Feininger or Joan Miró has been refined, it is neatly packaged along with a description and a certificate of authenticity, and it goes to the post. All orders are of course insured. Shipping is worldwide, there is no advance payment for the two. “We trust our customers,” they say. As a rule, you know each other, either from correspondence and telephone calls or personally from antiquarian book fairs in Stuttgart and Paris or from auctions. “With some customers you grow old together,” says Köstler. Trust is important in this business. After all, it is about considerable sums of money.
If you want to buy a particularly rare piece, you have to shell out some 10,000 euros. And that’s not even the top price range. With Mozart or Bach it can run into the millions. “We are not active in the high-end sector,” says Köstler. But even a handwritten sheet of music by Richard Strauss is so interesting for collectors that it is sold straight away. The buyers are not only regular customers, sometimes children and grandchildren also inquire, for whom letters from parents and grandparents are important as mementos. Or an art lover can buy a hand-signed autograph card as a present for a friend. For the latter you have to spend around 50 euros.
Many people are still familiar with the paper-thin pages of the “Merkhefte” of the publishing house Zweiausendeins, in which a wild mixture of books, records, posters and buttons was gathered. They have long since achieved cult status. Anyone holding one of the monthly catalogs with letters and manuscripts from the Tutzing antiquarians feels reminded of them at least haptically. The catalogs contain offers for customers. But there is also an online shop on the website and a newsletter.
Yes, and then they both have two hobbies: They love music, especially jazz – she plays bass, he saxophone, flute and sometimes the piano. The joy of playing can also lead to a small evening of house music for two. “Of course only with the window closed,” says the landlady. Whether Pauline Schmidt, the cat, likes it is open. In addition, the antiquarians curate voluntary exhibitions in the Tutzing local museum – including the most recent exhibition on street names. She traces the artists, writers, scientists and entrepreneurs who shape Tutzing to this day: “To know more about them is exciting and does not stop at local history.”
When he finally made it, everything is forgotten for a moment. The effort, the pain and also the stone he promised his children from the summit. “The light was so beautiful,” remembers Heinz Oberrauch. The evening sun bathed the peaks of the glacier landscape in shades of red and purple. It is October 3rd, 1980 and Heinz Oberrauch reaches the central summit of Annapurna in the Himalayas at around 6 p.m. The Starnberg man is the first person up here at 8051 meters, the main summit is only 40 meters higher. Heinz Oberrauch, then 32 years old, is enjoying this moment, saving it forever. The first thought he can remember: “Hopefully I’ll get back down here safely.” He barely survived this first ascent. A comrade had a fatal accident on the descent.
40 years later, Heinz Oberrauch is sitting with Ludwig Greissl, who led the expedition at the time, in the wood-paneled room of his house in Starnberg, leafing through the diary that he kept meticulously at the time. The glazier has saved everything, the leather shoes from back then, the avalanche shovel and the tin saucepan. The two put their memories of those eight weeks in Nepal together like siblings from their childhood together. When they rave about bag soups and ready-made potato mash with a big smile, you would think they are talking about a camping holiday in the Alps. In the next moment, however, they are very serious. “We set out for the summit much too late,” says Oberrauch. Ludwig Greissl raises his eyebrows. “That was a mistake,” said the 86-year-old who now lives in Icking. “Also that we didn’t drink enough.”
The Annapurna is considered one of the most dangerous eight-thousanders. By 2012, only 190 climbers had reached the summit, 61 climbers were killed. Why this mountain in particular? The idea suddenly came after the first joint Himalayan expedition three years earlier on the 7,077-meter-high Kun. “Why not an eight-thousander?” They asked themselves. “Something crazy has arisen in our heads”, Greissl wrote to Oberrauch at the time. They were weekend mountaineers with a big dream that suddenly seemed close enough to touch when a friend received permission for a German expedition to the tenth highest mountain on earth.
At the time, Greissl ran a company as a graduate engineer, Oberrauch had a glazier in Starnberg, as well as a wife and two children, three and five years old. He scrapes 10,000 marks for the expedition, packs up his equipment, and waves to the family at the airport. “That was the pioneering time back then.”
In two columns, each with 65 porters, the ten-person expedition leaves Pokhara about 200 kilometers west of Kathmandu at the end of August and the beginning of September. It was only on the spot that you decided not to head for the main summit, but the as yet unclimbed central summit. Without oxygen, of course, “it’s a huge effort with the bottles,” says Oberrauch. The men set up the base camp at 4,300 meters, a few days later camp two is at 5,700 meters. Two men fell ill, “as a group we were weakened early on,” recalls Greissl. When the third camp was built at 6500 meters on September 23, the radios broke, now the groups are on their own.
Oberrauch and Greissl set out together with Udo Böning from Starnberg, a fourth comrade and three Sherpas, fight their way higher and higher despite strong storms and set up a fourth camp on September 30th. Two days later, the men come to the death zone above 7,000 meters, where they set up camp five. A sixth camp seems too difficult for them under these conditions; on October 3rd, the summit should start early. But the departure is delayed.
Heinz Oberrauch tips over his stove when the snow melts and his sleeping bag catches fire. He sends his rope partner ahead, and Greissl and Böning also start with a Sherpa shortly afterwards. Oberrauch and another porter soon catch up with the men, only his rope partner, contrary to what was agreed, has taken the route to the main summit – but should not reach it and return to camp early. The Sherpas will also return soon.
But the men from Germany don’t want to give up, not so close to the finish line. The effort is enormous, Oberrauch leads the way and sometimes crawls on all fours over the crust, a powdery snow with an ice crust. He keeps breaking in. In the evening they reach the ridge to the summit, “a path to heaven”, as Greissl says. He remembers taking the last step to the summit quite deliberately. Overwhelmed by the impressions, he digs out his camera and takes photos. Greissl had to cancel two expeditions on eight-thousander due to snowstorms, now he’s in luck.
The night is drawing in faster and darker than expected, the descent becomes an ordeal. Greissl has a strong gust of tiny, sharp-edged ice crystals in his eyes, his conjunctiva is injured, his eyes only water. “I went down there blind,” he says. You are making slow progress, and Udo Böning is also exhausted. The two decide to bivouac at minus temperatures between 35 and 45 degrees at 7500 meters. Oberrauch makes his way back to the camp alone. He can barely speak, his mouth is so dry. They wish each other luck. When he thinks back to that moment now, 40 years later, words fail him. He strokes his gray beard and quotes a mountaineering saying: “The mountain only belongs to you when you are down again. Before that, you belong to him.”
Heinz Oberrauch arrives at the camp at around 1 a.m., and the next morning two comrades meet the stragglers. Both Greissl and Böning suffer from frostbite, on the descent one of their friends slips and falls several hundred meters into the depths. The body cannot be recovered. On October 7th, the team is back in base camp, Greissl’s camera remains in camp three wrapped in a sleeping bag. You should struggle later to prove your successful first ascent.
Greissl and Böning are flown to a hospital in Munich four days after their summit happiness. Greissl loses all toes, and dead limbs of his friend are also amputated. He is still deeply connected to Nepal and represents the country as an honorary consul in Bavaria.
At that time Oberrauch took the flight originally booked for everyone on October 24th. He brings his children a stone from this mountain after all; he remembered it the day after the summit.
On Thursday after several rear-end collisions between Gilching and Germering, nothing went on the Lindau autobahn: According to the police, a 27-year-old van driver caused a traffic jam of up to 15 kilometers in the direction of Munich at noon. In the accident, in which four cars were involved, the 27-year-old from Erding and a 55-year-old from Starnberg were slightly injured. Since the van had leaked oil, the road had to be cleaned. The autobahn was partially closed for this.
In the late afternoon, another accident happened on the Gilchinger driveway towards the state capital. According to the police, a woman from Munich drove her car, in which her two small children were sitting, into the car of a 24-year-old from Munich and pushed it against another car. The polluter and her children were taken to a clinic for an examination, where slight bruises were found. Oil had leaked here too – since the cleaning machine was already there, it only had to move a few hundred meters back to the new accident. The traffic was temporarily diverted in Wörthsee because two cars were left behind in a traffic jam. There was block handling in the Etterschlag tunnel.
On the way there, the emergency doctor in Starnberg on Hanfelder Straße is said to have been involved in an accident himself. When he wanted to overtake the ambulance with blue lights in his emergency vehicle, an 18-year-old from Wolfratshausen could no longer avoid him, according to the police. Those involved were unharmed.
Already in the morning a collision with three cars in the new tunnel gallery near the Kreuzlinger Forst had caused a traffic jam of up to five kilometers in the direction of Munich, according to the police, as the accident site could not be cleared immediately due to the construction work. Here, too, several cars got stuck in a traffic jam, there was also block handling in the Etterschlag tunnel. One person involved was slightly injured.
Quickly from Munich to Mallorca? Traveling in corona times is complicated. Unless you have business to do on the island. Then you can book a private jet that takes off on the desired date at the special airport in Oberpfaffenhofen. The research airport has had a permit for qualified business travel since 2008, and since then entrepreneurs, politicians and FC Bayern soccer players have regularly started and landed in the Fünfseenland. According to the aircraft noise association, business trips increased significantly in August. The chairman Rudolf Ulrich from Gilching speaks of “vacation and pleasure trips”.
Ulrich and his colleagues operate two measuring stations – one in Neuhochstadt and one in Geisenbrunn. In August 2017 there were 287 overflights, this year it was 477. Most recently, the machines regularly headed for Sylt, Nice and the Mediterranean area. A club member who wants to remain anonymous followed the aircraft that took off in Weßling on two days at the end of July via an online portal. “On a Friday, seven out of 18 flights went to Mallorca, on a Saturday nine out of eleven planes had the island in the Mediterranean as their destination.” Ulrich doubts that it was all business trips. He fears that even more private jets will take off from Oberpfaffenhofen in the future. The industry is booming, and there are more and more providers on the market. The noise is already a major burden for the residents. “The machines cause up to 85 dB (A),” says an affected club member from Neuhochstadt. This roughly corresponds to the noise level on a main road.
Christian Juckenack, site manager of the airport, cannot confirm the numbers of the association and speaks of “interpretation speculations”. In August there were hardly any changes in take-offs and landings compared to previous years. A total of 1196 flight movements were counted this year, in 2019 it was 972 and in 2017 even 1214. The “subjective increase” in air traffic is explained by the lockdown. There have been noticeably fewer flights in the past few months. In the meantime the numbers have risen again, “we are glad about that”. Business flights accounted for about a third of the 11,000 take-offs and landings each year. Where these journeys are going and with what intention, “I don’t have to and don’t want to control that”. He calls the accusation of the aircraft noise association that it is increasingly about vacations and pleasure trips “tendentious”. Edmo GmbH, as the operator of the special airport, only has to ensure that the requirements for business flights are complied with. For example, the type of aircraft and take-off mass are regulated, and a time window is set for take-offs and landings. In addition, a maximum of 9,725 qualified business flights are permitted per year – a figure that the airport consistently falls well short of with around 4,000 business flights per year.
“There is therefore no need for action for the Air Office in Southern Bavaria as the supervisory authority for the special airport in Oberpfaffenhofen,” said a spokeswoman for the government of Upper Bavaria. “As long as they stay under and the TUI does not offer any trips there,” the mayor of Gilching, Manfred Walter (SPD), sees no reason for criticism either. Weßling’s mayor Michael Sturm (Free Voters) announced that he wanted to check the numbers.
After 900 years, an era is coming to an end at Lake Starnberg. The Bernried sisters sell the monastery to the 2300-inhabitant community – an area of 30,000 square meters with a previously closed bathing area. Kita and elementary school should be housed in the old walls. Mayor Georg Malterer can also imagine an inn in the vault or a beer garden in the inner courtyard. The remaining 16 nuns can continue to live in the monastery, but have to move. You are nevertheless relieved. The Missionary Benedictines had been looking for investors – discreetly, but unsuccessfully. In the anniversary year of all places, they would otherwise have had to lock up their education center.
The Tutzing prioress, Sister Ruth Schönenberger, and Mayor Malterer announced the surprising deal to the local council on Thursday. Without a debate, but to the applause of around 40 listeners, the panel passed all the necessary resolutions unanimously. “We were faced with the decision to either lose the monastery or to secure the monastery for our village in the long term,” explained the town hall chief. “The monastery remains the heart of our monastery village Bernried.”
The parties have agreed not to disclose the purchase price. Not everything has been negotiated yet, the conclusion of the contract is still “a long way off,” said Sister Schönenberger. The sale would have to be approved by the Generalate in Rome and the Vatican. The order and the bishop have already been informed. The monastery did not actually want to go public with the news, but the rumor mill in the village was already simmering.
Both sides benefit from the deal. The Missionary Benedictines, who have been running an educational center in the facility since 1972, could not raise the money for fire protection. After the unsuccessful search for an investor, the nuns “with a heavy heart” planned to close the monastery and to wind up the educational business with its 35 employees by the end of the year.
The community was urgently looking for a location to expand the primary school and childcare facilities. Since the town hall got wind of the sales requests, Malterer and his predecessor Josef Steigenberger suggested that the nuns buy it through the community. “It was just before close,” said Sister Mechthild Hommel. When the employees threatened with dismissal found out about the news on Thursday, they were very relieved, said the prioress.
Two thirds of the complex remains an educational facility and living area for the sisters. The east wing with a view over the herb garden to the lake is to be gutted and converted into a primary school. Currently there are monastery cells, guest rooms and the chapel, which will remain there. The community receives grants for the renovation.
Two kindergarten groups are to move into a smaller building in the extensive park, the so-called garden hall, which is currently used for seminars and as a garage, and later the lunchtime care for the elementary school. The 24 children were originally supposed to be housed in containers. The area should be ready in early 2021.
The community wants to set up a municipal company to run the training center, which will also take over the occupancy of the summer cellar. This could create synergy effects, said Malterer. For example, the monastery kitchen could also take over the catering in the summer cellar. An inn could later be housed in the vaulted rooms next to the kitchen. The baroque hall and monastery library, which is used as the community library, are to remain accessible to the public in the future. The community had previously bought land from the Order. Together with the planned purchase of the monastery, “we have a great property on the lake,” said Steigenberger.
Tobias Kaiser has lived on Lake Starnberg for 40 years, first in Feldafing, then in the district town. The 63-year-old has his workplace a long way away, where he cannot even commute quickly. His office is in Florida, more precisely in Boca Raton.
Tobias Kaiser is a broker, he works in real estate and specializes in contemporary and classic modern architecture as well as investment properties. A job that he really enjoys, but at the moment he is hardly drawn across the Atlantic. He had actually booked his return flight for September 1, but has now postponed it indefinitely. He would like to stay here until November 3rd. On this day, the Americans elect their president – a new one, Kaiser hopes. The man from Starnberg has been in possession of the green card for almost 30 years, with the “US Permanent Resident Card” he has unlimited permission to stay and work anywhere in the USA. George HW Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Barack Obama: Kaiser has seen some presidents, no one has harmed America like Donald Trump. “He’s not doing the country any good.” The man from Starnberg considers the division of the nation into “you” and “we” by Trump to be extremely dangerous. He has seen so much hatred and violence since he lived and worked in the States for most of the year.
Tobias Kaiser holds something else in the Fünfseenland: Florida has become a corona hotspot. The number of infected people is increasing massively. Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis, a confidante of Trump, has done nothing to contain the pandemic for a long time and is still belittling it, Kaiser says. “We were missing a lighthouse person like Angela Merkel.”
It was not in the cradle of the son of an entrepreneurial family that he would end up as a real estate agent in America. After graduating from high school, he initially studies law in Cologne for four semesters, rather listlessly. He doesn’t really know what to do. A mentor shows him the way to the land of unlimited possibilities. Kaiser enrolled at the University of Syracuse, where he completed his Master of Science degree in communications in 1982.
He then returned to Europe and worked in advertising for ten years. In 1991 he founded a real estate consultancy and management company in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, in 1992 he received his state license as a real estate agent and in 2000 his diploma as a certified broker for international real estate transactions (CIPS). Modern architecture fascinated him even as a child, so he specializes in it.
Specialization in general: The brokerage profession in America can hardly be compared with that in Germany. In the states, it is much more difficult to get a license, says Kaiser, and buyers and sellers are much better protected than here. The net rental model, a form of return property investment, is common in the US. With the “triple net lease”, for example, the tenant not only pays the rent, but also property taxes, insurance and repairs. The landlord bears no responsibility or risk for the property and will get it back in the same condition as it was after the lease expires. “I’m considering,” says Kaiser, “offering this in Germany as well.”
Kaiser in Florida can broker more than 600 houses of classic and contemporary modernism. Their price: between $ 400,000 and $ 36 million. He has written a short guide “Buying and Selling Florida Real Estate” for those interested.
In Starnberg he is currently working on his websites, which are available in English and German. The real estate market in Florida is stable, especially Miami is currently “hip”. Many investors come from Brazil, Canada, but also from Italy and Germany. Money is there. Kaiser: “At least 60 percent of houses over a million dollars are paid for in cash.” He has three employees. His wife Lisa, an American who has been married for 16 years, is “the heart and soul of the company”.
Since the Corona crisis, property visits have only been carried out under strict hygiene requirements. Palm Springs County was one of the first to introduce compulsory masks, Kaiser says. Despite the Republican Ron DeSantis. The pandemic is also having an impact on the Freundeskreis. Kaiser: “We are in a quarantine bubble.” You only meet with people who are just as careful as you are yourself. There are also rejection of invitations if someone comes who is not so strict with the hygiene regulations.
How long Tobias Kaiser will commute between Bavaria and Florida, he doesn’t know. He still enjoys working very much – “and the winter weather in the Sunshine State is unbeatable”. Motorcycling is much nicer here. The eternally long and dead straight streets in Florida are “boring”. Photography and cooking are more exciting. But the 63-year-old’s great passion is gardening. “I grew trees in flower balcony boxes as a child.”
He knows exactly where he would like to be when he no longer wants to or cannot fly back and forth: “Here,” he says, “Starnberg is my home.”
The building on Mühlbergstrasse is ailing: there is a lack of fire protection, pipes are outdated, the roof containing asbestos is leaking. The municipality fears an unmanageable liability risk.From Peter Haacke