Why I'm heading in search of the Fuhrer

AS Randy Crawford said “one day I'll fly away” and so this week I shall.Enjoying a few days off from the hectic lifestyle of an Evening Star journalist, I am taking the midnight train to Stansted and leaving on a jet plane.

AS Randy Crawford said “one day I'll fly away” and so this week I shall.

Enjoying a few days off from the hectic lifestyle of an Evening Star journalist, I am taking the midnight train to Stansted and leaving on a jet plane.

Rest assured I'm not heading for sun, sea and binge drinking.

Indeed mine is what they call a “working holiday” as I have a project in mind, though I suspect that like “sporting personality”, a “working holiday” is something of a contradiction in terms.

But tomorrow I shall be presenting my travel documents, exchanging some currency and boarding the red eye out of this great nation to Germany and it's capital Berlin.

Attracted not only by its Christmas markets and exciting nightlife, I have determined to see what's left of Hitler.

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Though it will be tricky to find the Nazi leader I am going to have a good look and check no one has missed anything.

I know he was meant to have been burned in the back yard of the Reich chancellery more than 60 years ago but are we really sure? Who was there? Who found his body? Where are his dental records? The whole subject is surrounded in mystery and a journalist should always do his checks.

I'm going to start with the famous back yard and see if it's been tidied up since 1945, mine hasn't so they might not have bothered either.

Though I'm no expert I might find that career defining, fortune-making story that will give me fame, riches and an interview with Richard and Judy.

By this time next week I could be on the front of all the world's papers, signing film rights to my autobiography, having a bust up with a photographer outside an Ipswich nightspot and booking into rehab with 'exhaustion'.

So I've packed my notebook and a disposable camera just in case.

The only problem I can foresee - apart from the passage of time and the possible slight reluctance to mentioning the war - of the modern German, is the language barrier.

Though I once studied menu French and I am able to have a half-decent stab at rap, foreign languages are not my forte.

I even found a phrase book for those tricky situations where you cannot remember the German for bratwurst, sauerkraut, liebfraumilch or Fuhrer.

Thumbing through, I have committed to memory ten phrases just in case I find myself in a tricky situation and need to employ my full arsenal of easy charm.

With these short sentences up my sleeve and at my fingertips I'll be fine: Ich habe nichts zu verzollen.

I've nothing to declare.

Es ist fur meinen personlichen Gebrauch.

It is for my personal use.

Das ist ein Geschenk.

This is a gift.

Wie komme ich nach Amarillo? Is this the way to Amarillo? Sind Sie ledig? Are you single? Ich kenne eine gute Discothek I know a good disco.

Warum lachen Sie? Why are you laughing? Was fur ein scheussliches Wetter! What awful weather! Lassen Sie mich bitte in Ruhe! Leave me alone please! Ich mochte mit meinem Rechtsanwalt sprechen.

I want to speak to my lawyer.

THE ballroom dancing lessons are going well.

Bit by bit I can feel my steps take me closer each week to the hallowed dance floor and the company of Brucey.

Watching Darren Gough, I admit I am constantly reminded of myself - we are both large men with powerful physiques and physical prowess.

I think it somewhat odd no one else has noticed the likeness.

Knowing I am modest, perhaps they don't want to embarrass me.

So as the weeks go by and I expertly guide my dancing companion around the floor of the drama studio at Holywells High School - the scene of all the action of the hardcore and most dedicated branch of the East Suffolk and Ipswich Strictly Come Dancing fan club - I am gaining confidence.

I have now made a start on the salsa.

A tricky little number which requires much movement of hips, the salsa is perhaps not my favourite but I might as well have it in my repertoire of moves.

Requring some practicing at home, I have taken to sashaying my way around the kitchen as I rustle up a batch of cheese straws.

Yesterday I even found myself shimmying around the sitting room as I dusted.

Darren, of course, has one-to-one training, costumes and high heels.

I am struggling with just twenty minutes a week and a pair of moccasins that have seen better days.

This effort better be worth it.

Come on Brucey, get in touch.

THANK God that's over.

Now smug and self-satisfied, I have finished my Christmas shopping.

No longer will I have to trawl my way around over-heated overcrowded noisy shops - what a relief.

I can concentrate on other things.

I was back at my little home in Ipswich relaxing with a few blinis, a small gin and tonic, Katherine Jenkins and a magazine, when a thought struck me.

“I wonder,” I said to myself.

I hope it wasn't a thought that escaped out loud but now I live alone the spectre of talking to myself has been known to rear its disturbingly unpleasant head and it quite easily could have been.

“I wonder,” I said, “I wonder what I would like for Christmas.” A few people have been asking me and I have been so wrapped up with worrying about my own shopping mission I declined to comment not thinking they would be in the same position.

Of course, the answer is I haven't a clue.

I don't need any more things and stuff and I certainly don't need deodorant gift packs, aftershave, CDs, DVDs, clothes which I don't chose and books I don't fancy reading.

I admit I am tricky to buy for, but what entertainer isn't? It's just part of my mystique and persona.

I am expecting a lot of socks.

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