In April 2016 I set off on a solo bike trip from Lisbon to Nordkapp which I reached in August. I have cycled for 8219km crossing Portugal, Spain, France, Belgium, The Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Sweden and Norway visiting eco villages along the way.
Yes, it was amazing, and yes I changed, or better I got back to my roots, the ones I was forgetting.
Cycling connects me deeply to nature, the environment and helped me discovering again the beauty we have left.
- I left Munich with my bike on a train to Basel, Lyon, Perpignan, Barcelona, Madrid and finally Lisbon.
- From Lisbon I cycled through Portugal, Spain, France, Belgium, The Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Sweden and Norway reaching Nordkapp, my “final” destination.
- From Nordkapp I hop on a night bus to Rovaniemi (exactly the last one I could get that year), then a train to Helsinki. From there I crossed the Baltic sea by ferry arriving in Tallinn (Estonia), taking a bus to Vilnius, Warsaw, Vienna and back to Munich.
Life gave me an opportunity and I took it.
I took time. Finally.
Time to rethink about priorities and values, time to understand how I want to live, time to get rid of fears which do not belong to me and time to discover beauty again. We all need beauty, and I found plenty of it left.
I started from Lisbon because it is a city very dear to me. I lived there for two years and many things happened. I studied, worked and experienced the melting pot and energy that just a city like Lisbon has (sorry it is true). It is my second home (I just realized I have many second homes but none is like Lisbon)
Why did I reach Nordkapp? well, first it just sounded far away but it is also the northernmost point of Europe and I liked the idea of connecting south to north and see the differences.
WAS IT DANGEROUS?
No, I am sure almost every cyclist would tell you.
Fear is just in our mind and the world is better than we think. It is, believe me.
I mean, of course bad things can happen everywhere but unless you do something too boarder line, you would experience that humanity is open and kind and that all this fear we are pushed to feel against each other just keeps us isolated, stuck and dependent. Fight it back!
P.s The only scary experience I had it was in Norway where people threw stones against my tent. Peace & love Norwegians, I loved your country and people (apart from those who tried to kill me that night)
WHAT DO I DO NOW?
I won´t stop cycling and fighting for environmental & social sustainability.
I mean, I am not burning down bad companies, bras, and shouting on the streets.
Maybe just a little.
I simply decided to change my way of living, with my everyday life and choices. Learning and applying what represents my values and idea of life.
I won´t be able to change the world myself, I am not Jesus Christ and I do not need or want it to be (and by the way, all that beard does not suit me, really). Changing the way I live is already a lot of work. Believe me.