Our next stop was Wieck. A little wind had picked up, so we decided to shelter in a very cute cove. There were plenty of German tourists roaming around and we were very fortunate to get one of two benches for ourselves. We decided to have a coffee, so proceeded in baffling the holidaymakers by pulling out our stove and boiling some water. The sun was shining through a gentle breeze, it seemed like a God given opportunity to dry our washing. Without thinking I strung our clothesline between our bikes and hung a jersey and our cycle underwear.
Now bear in mind a day or so back we had watched Germans get naked on a beach whilst getting into their togs. It seemed to people on the beach that there was nothing unusual about this public display of nudity. Within a minute of hanging our undies up it felt like we had the collective wrath of Deutschland scowling down their noses at us. I mean these people glared so nastily at us that I suspect their deep furrows were causing them physical pain. Ugh, would a smile do any harm? Not feeling overly welcome, well not feeling welcome at all, we finished our drinks and left pretty quickly.
About three kilometres down the road Sharon’s gears started playing up again. We stopped and stuffed around while an increasingly grumpy Kel failed totally to fix them. We were looking forward to getting another three kilometres down the road to a town called Ahrenshoop. Ahrenshoop is one of Sharon’s ancestral homes. Yes she has Prussian blood in her; this explains why in the cupboard at home our canned goods are standing proud and tall in regimented straight lines. Fortunately she has been balanced out with some Scottish blood which means sometimes she forgets to turn the labels so they face outwards.
Anyhow we struggled in a head wind along gravel tracks. Sharon’s gears were shonkally misbehaving.
Sharon had told me for years that she did not want to return to the birthplace of her kin, apparently she did not want to spoil her fond memories of the place. On the other hand her family had so majestically painted their mystical haven homeland to me that I was really very keen to see this surely heavenly place.
Well, we rounded the corner to discover that Ahrenshoop is no longer framed by pearly gates and instead had been overtaken by the automobile and its camera wielding inhabitants. In short, we sucked in petrol fumes and dodged car worn hiking boots all the way to the oasis of a lovely little bicycle shop. They gladly relieved us of Sharon’s tiring bike and allowed me to leave mine there while they repaired and we found food.
We dodged cars all the way to a fish restaurant. Sharon had remembered how great the fish was and I hadn’t destroyed this memory for her yet. Sharon went in to buy and I searched for an outdoor seat. After an exorbitant time Sharon returned with a deep fretted furrow frown holding two postage size plates of fish and chips. She was righteously complaining about the price while I glared back at her thinking of my shrinking stomach that needed to be full with cycling fuel. Oh my goodness we were becoming like everyone else, frowning and glaring; it was time to get out of ‘Dodge’.
We groaned and grimaced our way back to the oasis. It appeared that it only took the bike mechanic a few minutes to fix Sharon’s bike and he did not want to charge us for it. Cycle shops seem to always have quality people in them who are always ready with a special kind of compassion for tour-cyclists. In effort to give them some kind of money we purchased a repair kit, said thanks and got our hungry bellies out of town just as quickly as we could.
“Sharon, I am truly sorry for destroying your fairytale memories of your ancestral fishy fatherland. I know I have destroyed your Ahrenshoop, please forgive me and I will never again deliberately knock the tin-cans in our cupboard out of their straight German lines.”
Day 1 – Setting Sail
Day 2 – Training, part 1
Day 2 – Training, part 2
Day 3 – New Expectations, part 1
Day 3 – New Expectations, part 2
Day 4 – Cobbles, part 1
Day 4 – Cobbles, part 2
Day 5 – Each Other, part 1
Day 5 – Each Other, part 2
Day 6 – A Sprocket of a Day, part 1
Day 6 – A Sprocket of a Day, part 2
Day 7 – Bonking, part 1
Day 7 – Bonking, part 2
Day 7 – Bonking, part 3
Day 8 – Time Keeping
Day 9 – Homeward
Day 10 – I Love Germany