Initially I stay on a campsite just outside Dresden. Steffi, who runs the campsite was great and loaned me her laptop for checking emails and doing some blogging. I decided to move into Dresden after getting myself locked out of the site and having to climb over the barbed wire fence to get in!
I also needed to spend time getting Tilly more sorted out since the charging system had not been working since before Berlin. Dresden seemed the logical place to get these things sorted out. I had been using the Biologic Reecharge transformer and battery and I could not tell if it was this system or the dynamo hub that was bust. And so moved to Lollis Homestay hostel.
After conversations with the hostel workers I first tried the local bike workshop, which was unfortunately not running the days I was there. I then trawled the local bike shops and chatted to the mechanics and emailed Rob, who had built the wheel and installed the hub …. coming to the conclusion that the Reecharge system not the hub was the issue. So I installed the USB WERK system with a usb battery and … hey presto … all the lights flashed merrily … HAPPY, HAPPY!
And so to Dresden … a city with buildings incredibly restored following the WWII bombings by the British.
And now introducing the awesome Sophie Sander … !
As I was pushing Tilly through Dresde, fully powered up, checked out and good to get going again … I passed Sophie, who was working selling bus tours, in the street. She instantly pounced out – where are you going, what are you doing? Initially I am a little reticent to talk but she immediately tells me about her cycle touring … alone … in SE Asia and I feel totally at ease!
Some people instantly become important and firm friends … Sophie is one of those people for me. She firstly invited me to a 1st May party in a nearby town and than invited me to come and stay with her for the evening so we could cycle to the party together the following day. She said it was an ‘alternative’ party and it sounded just like a boatie or barn gathering so right up my street/canal.
Sophie lives in a beautiful, communal house with a massive garden and lovely house mates. We spent a good number of hours chatting in the evening about cycle touring as a woman alone and ate really well and drank chai …. I could easily have just moved in!
Sophie has taken some awesome pictures of her cycle touring and we talked a lot about composition and how I can improve my shots … I take way too many and then don’t cut them ruthlessly enough … Sophie also has a great, but heavy, camera. She has done so much and is now rather a hero of mine … in case you cannot tell!!
So the following day we leave Dresden for the party and I start following another river, the Donau.