Russia to Spain Tour Leg 12 – Flensburg to Hamburg

Excepted the customs would check my passport but nothing happened, there was no border between countries with EU region. I was wondering why Hongkong people still have to cross “border” to mainland China even though we officially are part of China. My conclusion is Asian people are less trustworthy and less self-disciplined. Other examples are subways or train station without gates; self paying machines in supermarkets. I cannot imagine one day these could happen in Asian countries, maybe a century later when the mentality of Asian people are upgraded to such level.

I was glad to ride on bike lanes as well in Northern Germany, only that are not as well maintained as in Denmark. Lots of cracks and bumpy parts along the way, that my front pannier bag fell twice. It was all good, when the traffic was light, I sneaked to the car road to ride a bit.

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The first night when I was close to Schleswig, it got dark really quick after 9pm in late August, and there were no public park in little town that I could pinch my tent. That’s why I tried to knock on somebody’s door to see if they allowed me to put my tent in the garden for a night. The first response was a cold “No”, kind of defeated by that but I understand the culture in Germany is not as open as in Scandinavia. The second time I didn’t bother to ask, I just set up my tent quietly next to a seems-to-be abandoned house and slept through the night. The next morning there were obviously people discussing outside my tent, as soon as they went back to the house, I quickly packed up everything and carried on. Honestly if they asked me to leave, you just explained the situation last night, 99% people would understand and show pity on you and let you go. Some better ones would ask if you need to fill up your water bottles, or even give up a little bit to eat. I always believe nice people are way more than bad ones. Anyway, you won’t stay at the same spot for a second night, so leave with a polite manner even though somebody kick you out.

Taking an easier way directly heading to Hamburg, instead of going through Kiel, I had enough time to arrive in 2 days. Towns in Germany are quite near to each other, mostly just 5-10km away, so you can always get enough supply.

However, I discovered German people don’t put cemetery around churches where I can get water, instead I have to find big supermarkets where they either have toilets or water tap next to the recycling machines. They just adopted the bottle recycling campaign not long ago, by the influences of Scandinavian countries.

Stopped at Barmstadt for a night before reaching Hamburg, I already had 3 days without internet access, I felt a bit insecure at first as I couldn’t use my Google map to navigate (I already downloaded that part of maps I would need when I was still in Denmark), but then I felt liberated when I was not tied to certain routes, as well as rushing to update my blog and pictures.

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I turly enjoyed the trip more!

I met my hosts Heike and Volker the next day, they are so friendly to provide everything I needed, and showed me what I can sightsee in the city. The most unforgettable experience was taking part in “Critical mass” peaceful cycling protest! If you want to know more about this worldwide event, check it out:
More than 2000 cyclists joined this monthly ride on main roads across the city to show people Bicycle is actually a part of transport! And there should be more infrastructures to be built to faciliate everyday cyclists.

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Here are some little glimpse of Hamburg, Germany:
Havencity, was full of warehouses over the last centuries, but nowadays most of them are converted into museums and residental flats.

Tunnel across the main harbour.

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Town hall with a lot of activities going on everydayOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

My host Volker checked my bike and fixed all the problems to make it run more smoothly! Danke! I learnt so many practical repairing skills from him! And his wife prepared so many delicious meals, and even filled up my bag with loads of food before I left the next day! I always love people who are willing to share and help. When I settle down later, I will surely do the same to help other cyclists or traveler!OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Flensburg to Hamburg  165km

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