Monday, 12 June 2017

Down the River Elbe - a knock on the table

We sat outside the ice cream cafe in the warm sun.
Sunday afternoon, we were in Wittenberg, birthplace of Martin Luther’s teachings 1617. The bikes were checked and ready.


I entered a bar for a coffee. 
It was a dark place with walls covered with displays of Corgi, Matchbox, and Mattel toy cars

We sat outside the ice cream cafe in the warm sun

So like Brecht’s Mother Courage I was to range across the countryside

Here, one year ago we had finished the first part of our journey down the River Elbe, Germany’s watery arterial that pours out into the North Sea.
For another week we were moving downstream on electric bikes.  

This year I was team support; an injury precluded my being on a bicycle. So like Brecht’s Mother Courage I was to range across the countryside, crossing the river by ferry, offering support in the form of water, wit and chocolate at pre-determined stops each day. 

Monday morning, dull and overcast as Dave, Humphrey, Iain and Mike set off, cheerful and prepared for the 75 kilometers that day.

10:30: Before crossing on the Elbe Coswig ferry I entered a bar for a coffee. 
It was a dark place with walls covered with displays of Corgi, Matchbox, and Mattel toy cars.
Five men sat at two tables each with one a beer bottle (large) no glass.
Each one stared into the middle distance. No one said a word.

A sixth man entered and the silence was broken as he approach each table and tapped it with his knuckle. An apparent greeting to this assembled company. 

See all the drawings here http://bit.ly/elbe2017