Been a long time since the previous World Photo Tour update and I am actually in Aalborg now, but here are the happenings from Hamburg to Flensburg, through Kiel, with the rest up until Aalborg to follow in a soon-to-be-published next article, so we’ll jump straight to it, ending the West-Germany chapter of my walk. By now you probably know the drill – inner thoughts first, stories and photos to go.
So – a bit of myself on this part. One of the things I came to really enjoy on my walk is the sharing of music. A LOT of music. I give Timpuri Noi, Subcarpați, Alexandru Andrieș, Urma from Romania, Isi D, Crafters and some other artists from Harrogate and many many more, and take back anything and everything. Other things I collect on my walks are house ideas. And yet another thing is life stories of people I meet. Some of them will be heard by others, some I keep only for myself. And I do meet a lot of people – from beggars to middle management, from gay guys to lesbians, from happy married couples to forever-alone types, from young and desperate to old and fulfilled.
Some things that are (were) on my mind since last time & tune of the leg:
- I’m afraid that I won’t be able to share anything any more. It just so happens that sometimes I have nothing to say about anything. And on the same note, I’m afraid I won’t be able to love anyone.
- My boots will need changing soon, anyone interested in buying buy a really worn pair, walked 2.000 km in, as a trophy? :)
- Lost a toe-nail.
- From Harrogate, I left running. I left fast. I left looking back with fear and crying. While I was there, home, there were weeks with an overall sleeping time of 20h. I left so I can sleep. Doing it for all the wrong reasons? There’s nothing like that. It’s just doing it. It’s doing something. I left so I can be. My life was this sinking boat and I was the captain and crew. This road… this road is an ongoing process of actively forgetting, replacing former pain with a life measured in miles and photos. I needed to escape that place, but I had nowhere to go. So I decided to go everywhere. Three and a half months on the road now. But happily feeling better than ever. I do know now that I will never regret this, for it’s all working towards being in a state of complete harmony with everything around. I sometimes find myself laughing with tears just by looking back now. I came to know that I can do everything I want.
And it actually got a bit hard to leave Hamburg, but I didn’t leave empty handed. This little memories of having felt like a kid again, this many feelings and a key… And a simple good-bye was said.
Two days later I found myself in Kiel, looking to find my next host – Caro Kruse – one really bright and beautiful Hannover girl. Too bad I caught her while she was cold, otherwise my time around Kiel would’ve been tons more fun. So this time it was up to me to discover the city. So there you have it: Kiel as I saw it – biggest city in the northern German state of Schleswig-Holstein and home to the busiest artificial waterway in the world – yup! the canal here is busier than the Panama one. What else? Home to the largest sailing event in the world – this year starting on the 16th June – ah, can’t win them all! and… the regular ferries from Norway and Sweden, bringing in thousands of Scandinavians who leave the supermarkets empty of any form of alcohol – the booze is way, way cheaper here than what they are used to pay up north! Oh, and another thing – due to the fact that it was the U-boats base, Kiel was heavily bombarded amidst the latter year of the Second World War. So obviously it had to be rebuilt almost from scratch, a reason why you won’t find too many old heritage buildings and the place looks rather modern.
On the day of my departure, though, Caro took me across the canal, on the north side, just for a cofee at this former fishermen café (it was actually Fritz Cola – another reminder of Hamburg).
I then followed my way north-north-west towards Flensburg – loved the scenery!, reaching Eckernförde at the end of a long day of walking in which I took a longer break in Gettorf, enough to become a subject of curiosity for two locals – Joana Büchler and Sofie Ber. The night was then spent on the beaches of Eckernförde – really nice, cosy place, inviting me to take more photos of it in the morning.
It was good to camp on the beach. I didn’t miss the high tides at all!
And yes, the rapeseed is definitely out there!
One and a half day later I was in Flensburg. Lovely place! A smaller, prettier Kiel. And here I first met Anja Lotties – busy little bee trying to wrap-up her master thesis on management, and then Raúl Doerwald – my two hosts, both lovely and generous. And in between great architecture, street life, nice cars, beautiful boats and old men doing street-fishing, like Tilman was doing, we took the time off and rested our feet at the end of the dock for some good chill-out sessions.
By this time the weather started to catch some heat. I had a rest at Raúl – interesting quiet guy – his specialty is biomechatronics (prosthesis) – what a noble thing to do for a living! After Flensburg, my German endeavour soon ended, crossing the border into Denmark. So long, farewell, auf Wiedersehen, goodbye… Germany! Until next time that is, for I’ll return on the Eastern part once coming back from Denmark.