In the morning, I felt a little lonely and reached out to some folks close to me. That felt good and gave me a sense of connection.
This morning, my neighbor Frank came over and brought me coffee. He works in Cottbus, a major nearby town, and came with his Jeep Wrangler and his trailer to spend a week of vacation here. Another nice person from Saxonia.
I packed up without hectic and hit the road. I followed the river Neiße with the Polish border at arms length all day. There was a bit of headwind but overall the conditions were perfect for cycling. I met a couple of fellow cyclist who are all heading for the Baltic Sea.
Finally, I arrived at the point were the Neiße flows into the Oder, a much larger stream. Very beautiful and impressive.
I passed Eisenhüttenstadt and later Frankfurt (Oder), Germany’s most eastward town. The last kilometers, I cycled through off-road terrain at the shores of the Oder. Simply beautiful but tons of mosquitoes everywhere.
My camping site tonight is a private garden and I am the only guest. Even a restaurant is around the corner. I enjoyed a decent dinner with a stunning view at the Oder.
About 30 years ago, two zis scholarships helped me to broaden my horizon, expand my understanding of what is possible, and develop more self-confidence. zis is a non-profit organization that has been awarding scholarships for study trips to young people between the ages of 16 and 20 for more than 60 years. Today, the word we use for tenacity and grit is resilience - and I've made it my profession, to help managers around the world to develop more of this inner power.
In retrospect, the experiences I've had on these trips to Scotland and Iceland have been priceless for my development. After having had a childhood with some challenges, I learned that I could cycle 1,700km on my own and get wet every day without despairing. I have learned that I was able to get along with only 300 € for 4 weeks and still had a good time. I have learned what it's like to be threatened with deportation and how to get an interview with the President from such a crisis. I have understood that limitations are primarily constructs in our heads, and I want to make these insights available to as many adolescents as possible.
View all posts by Karsten Drath