In the summer of 1997 I was standing in line for the bathroom when a lady approached me. I had noticed her checking me out, but was too shy to pay her more attention because she was quite an impression. She asked if I was a model, which I was not, but she insisted I come into the agency. I had never considered modeling but I was with two guys who were and they took me under their wings and into the agency a few days later. I had come for the summer and ended up staying for years. New York City was the place I belonged. I knew it from the very first moments there, I had found my place. I did not have any money. My English barely existed, I did not know a single soul, but I was determined to stay. It was scary and exhilarating at the same time. Modeling nearly killed me, but it also got me visas and around the world which I had grown up dreaming of as a kid behind the Iron Curtain in East Berlin.