Qantas did great, carrying us off to a good start into our European adventure. When the announcement over the PA requested Alberto and me to report to the service desk in Singapore, I immediately thought it had something to do with the missing Vegetarian meal. On the Brisbane – Singapore leg of our journey, the crew had bend over backwards to make sure I was well fed, finding a spare Indian chickpea dish and radioing ahead to ensure Vegetarian fare on the connecting flights.
But the announcement referred to a change in itinerary, flying to Berlin via Frankfurt rather than London/Heathrow, which also included a free upgrade to Premium on the longest leg of our journey, the over 13 hour Singapore-Frankfurt flight, and an earlier arrival time in Tegel. Sweet.
Grey drizzle and temperatures just above zero greeted us. That’s Berlin in March how I know it. The forecast for the following days promised blue sky and sunshine and we weren’t disappointed.
The new Canyons were build up in no time, despite jet lag. I have been a bit quiet on that in the past few weeks and I promise I will write more about it in upcoming posts. For now only so much: I decided to order the Aeroad, finally. It was the bike I wanted all along but I had doubts that it was the right bike for the Alps and Dolormites and Pyrenees. Loving the ride is an understatement and when I pushed the pace and hit 47km/h without even trying, I knew why they call this The Breakaway Bike.
On our first exploratory ride we stopped at a local bike shop in Lauta because Alberto needed some adjustments on his set up. The short stop turned into an hour’s conversation with Mario, the mechanic. He made us cappuccinos, too, and when he offered to take us on a little ride on his day off, we happily and excitedly accepted.
Yesterday I spotted the first signs of spring. Sweet little messengers Krokus and Schneeglöckchen are the first to stick their heads out, telling of spring in the air.
It’s Sunday and it’s going on 10:30am right now and we have to get ready to meet Mario for the “little” 100km ride to the Spreewald. When he called yesterday, he reminded me that cyclists in Germany are not as crazy as Aussies. They don’t start their rides vorm Aufstehen (lit: before getting up). The sun is out, the air seems balmy and I’m just glad that it was winter here and our guide today hasn’t been on his road bike since September. I may have a chance to keep up…