Curious serenity rather than royal enthusiasm could be felt on Thursday morning at the market on Wittenbergplatz, shortly before the arrival of King Charles III. and his wife Camilla. “What’s going on here?” one man asked another at the barrier that separates the stalls on West Berlin’s central square at KaDeWe and also keeps customers away from the market. “Well, the king is coming!” said the man waiting, who actually only wanted to buy hackepeter at the market, like every Thursday.

A good one and a half hours before the king, a large number of police officers came to discuss security with many protocol officers. Police officers also stood on the surrounding rooftops. The market people first stood chatting in the sun without buyers or employment. A market woman didn’t want to say anything about the monarch’s visit. “I’m the wrong one,” she said. After all, the Wittenbergplatz had been cleaned up nicely – and then everything would soon be over and normal.