After 2 weeks of catching trains, cycling, and going around various festivals and cities, I found myself in Berlin. I'd always planned on being in Berlin at this time; I was supposed to catch one last train on from there to visit Auschwitz and then cycle home to London. What I hadn't planned on was being there with only 40 euros, no shoes and no bike.
The dream looked unlikely, however I had a 'plan' as to how to get a new bike so the venture could still at least be possible.
The below is a journal of sorts that I have been writing throughout. I would say it has been the only thing keeping me company through this whole trip, but this would be a lie as I am also with Richard Dawkins. Richard Dawkins is the name I have given to my Casio SA-47, a mini keyboard with over 180 inbuilt tones and patterns. He is pretty sweet.
I realise this is quite long and self-indulgent at times, but I've had a lot of time on my hands, so yeah, feel free to read or ignore it. I will add more as I get further and have the time. Please send me a reply if you like, I'd love to hear from you.
A ringing phone wakes me up and the sight of a call from mum brings me more joy than usual. This is not to say that I don't enjoy talking to the woman, but I figure rebellious youths (/disorganised idiots) such as myself will always associate calls from a parent with being in some kind of trouble. Indeed just as a parent will most likely associate a call from a child on holiday with an imminent dent to their bank account.
She'd missed one such call the day before, but she knew the deal. All parents know the deal; no child has ever called from holiday just to tell them that they are battered in Pacha in Ibiza and that they wish they were there. No, they call because they've fucked it.
I answered the phone and entered the usual half-baked formalities I am accustomed to with such parent-directed pleas for help, "Hey, how are you? I'm good, yeh, you're good? cool, cool, nice weekend? yeh, me too, cool, so yeh, listen um.... I need money, help and love..." I wince as the what we both know to be inevitable request comes out, "but mainly money" I stress.
I told her that my bike had been stolen in MELT! festival and I told her that this would make it difficult for me to complete my cycling tour of Europe. Though I'm sure the latter part she could've probably worked out herself. I told her that it was my birthday coming up soon. I asked her if I could buy myself a new bike for my present.
The blabbering continued, before she interrupted and calmed me with just a few words as she's always had a knack for. She told me getting a bike sounded like a good idea and would make a good birthday present. I told her I loved her, hung up, gathered my mountain of possessions (which somehow failed to include a pair of shoes), my 40 euros, and left the Hostel feeling incredibly excited and happy by the prospect of a new bike. It was on. Thanks Mum.