The mammoth vanished overnight in May. The Viking Ship has run aground. The graffiti-covered T. rex has been lying on its side for years, its puny arms aloft. Swan-shaped gondolas lie scattered in the undergrowth, the occasional head poking above the weeds. The Old England village’s mock-Tudor buildings are charred from a fire in the summer, and the Wild West Village is merely a pile of rubble.
Walking around Berlin’s Spreepark, which has been abandoned since 2001, is like a stroll through a post-apocalyptic future. Time is frozen. Barely anything moves. Sometimes a family of raccoons who have found a home underneath the old Ghost Train tunnel rustle in the undergrowth. On the other side of the river outside the park, longboats filled with Polish coal dock silently by the power station.
Only the Ferris wheel still has a certain stately grace. When the wind catches in its rusty spokes, it valiantly grinds back into action with a screech. People who have visited Spreepark at night insist it sounds more like a groan, as if the place is still having nightmares about the drama of its demise. ….