“The last one turns off the lights”

I was born in Turkey and grew up in Germany, mainly Cologne, and lived there until I was 19. Since I grew up in West Germany, I always had this notion that people in the East were unhappy and that the countries were not developed. This idea took a peak before the fall of the Berlin Wall for me because it seemed that everyone was trying to escape to the West (or that was how it was reflected in the media). They had even printed T-shirts at that time, one of which I never forget said "der letzte macht das licht aus", meaning "the last one turns off the lights". So, we in the West believed that the West was doing good to them. However, my way of thinking was challenged in 2010, when I met a woman in Berlin. We chatted and she said "My country does not exist", I was perplexed since her accent showed she was a native German. When I asked her why, she told me she was from the DDR. That was the first time when I realised that these were actually two different countries and not one as we had been told so many times. A second eye-opener was when I was living in Azerbaijan; there we were discussing with a group of people economic systems. I was in favour of the capitalist system and argued that capitalist countries were actually successful, but one person denied and claimed that there were some good examples within the socialist system. He was talking about East Germany, which was again perplexing for me since we in West Germany had always heard and read the opposite.