Day 45 – Magdeburg to Wolfenbuttel (well 8km before town in the bush)
KM – 91.6
Avg – 15,8
Saddle Time – 5:46
Today was run of the mill with a small suprise guest making his appearance in the Redman’s blog – more on that later. It was so windy and the wind turbines (not a good sign to see them) were all facing away from me damn it – as you can see by my average it was a pretty slow day that dragged on in the morning – I have a feeling I will have prominent headwinds until I turn left at France.
I spent a lot of last night giving Thor a real good once over. After so much bumping around things get loose and once you start on something you’re eyes get focussed on everything. I updated the blog last night and whilst the photos uploaded which took forever thanks the internet dropping out all the time, I was working on Thor…It ended up being a late one (4am) as I just kept on going and gave him the best tune up a machine like him could have. Got up at 8 and had some breakky then set off. It was good again to be on the road and off the Elbe. The Elbe was great but it’s just good to be navigating, working things out etc. I’m still crap at map reading but I find my way ok with not too many bad turns using a combo of map on road and gps in cities. I got here so it can’t be all that bad. I really feel the difference now my pedal has been fixed – I feel slightly more power on my up stroke giving me a constant flow of energy and it’s great. I really feel as though i’m starting to pedal from my core and using better technique to gain the most power on the bike. I feel at home on the bike now and it’s a great feeling.
Moving on – As I left the hostel I needed a camping shop and found one pretty quick – just got a dry bag and some more butane for cooking. The bakery next door was smelling pretty good (even though I just had breakfast) so I popped in there. I was fiddling with my bags when out popped this man (Gerhard) and he just without my knowing it bought me a wurst sausage thingy and a roll with mustard. He really wanted to know everything about my trip and then told the lady at the counter to get me a coffee. I mean this man doesn’t know me from a bar of soap but he just does that. We got to chatting and his wife is just having routine checkup at the hospital and he was waiting for her. He said Australians are great people but not people from the USA hahahah (No offense Danielle hehe). We talked for about an hour and he was proud of Magdeburg and gave me some history lessons or two and explained how it was when the iron curtain was up and the war– he was the nicest old man ever – he then tried to give me 10 euros for good luck and there’s no way I am taking money from an old German dude – food and coffee yes hehe but not money. I threw the money back at him and tried to pay for both our meals but it was already paid for – no word of a lie – he just bought it and then gave it to me and starting chatting – so weird. We said our goodbyes and he walked off and Ifinished my coffee and took off also – only to find the ten euros wedged under the strap of my pannier – what a bloody legend. I really need to buy a few small things I think – I didn’t think of that but just something to say thanks to these people because I have literally nothing but essentials – I could give someone a muesli bar or a map bwahahaha. Magdeburg….You have done Germany proud – top effort.
So I took off and when something big like that or I visit an important historic sight or something, the bike is a really good time to just reflect and think about things and just let the thoughts flow – it’s really great – so for about an hour I was riding along the open road thinking how good this holiday is and what I am experiencing.
I rode on for another two hours then stumbled across the Iron Curtain. I stoped and looked around and read the boards and again was in thought about what it would’ve been like prior 1989/90 and how that’s shaped things today and almost every German i’ve spoken too brings it up as the first or second topic and they’re not afraid to share their opinion either which is great. I like that.
I was cruising along today hugging the curb and a little snake probably about 20cm came out in a split second I was going past and splat – i felt some of it hit my leg too – gross. Never had that before.
The sun was setting so it was time to slow down and keep my eyes peeled for somewhere to camp – it is illegal here to wild camp but MEH! What is strange is that I struggle sometimes around the afternoon and as soon as the sun starts setting I get all my energy and am ready to ride the night away – maybe that’s a sign I should get up earlier.
Found a spot near a river and just cooked dinner first to scope it out and no one was around (apart from mice, bats and a pissed off wild cat that won’t get lost).
What did I have for dinner you say – well it was carrots, potatoes, onion, garlic, sauerkraut, metwurst – mash it all up and you got yrself a good hearty European winter staple there my friend with some left overs for lunch. Plus two boiled eggs and three stroopwafels (syrup wafers mmmm) and two muesli bars. – just hit the sides – only just.
Ill trrryyyyy to get up early tomorrow – it’s starting to get cold now – not enough to bother me yet but 4 in the mornings is fun