Trip Start Sep 28, 2011
333Trip End Ongoing
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The sun has got his hat on as we rent free bikes from hostel Lollis Homestay and head for the Altstadt (old city) side of the river Elbe. This is the tourist area, with most of the city's architecture and culture residing here, along with a mountain of camera wielding crazies. Including myself. If you visit, I suggest renting some decent bikes to see the sites. Dresden is very cycle friendly, but not all the bikes are people friendly. Unfortunately ours continued to fall apart when hit with so much as a pebble. Although there are plenty of cycle lanes, there is a fair share of cobblestones, tram lines and rocky paths to trouble the boneshakers we landed ourselves with. Make sure you get a bike with decent suspension or you'll be afraid to sit down for two days.
The more I see of it, the more I like it, the more it is a possible new home when I come to rest my weary bones. At only two hours from Berlin and Prague, Dresden is in a uniquely perfect position. It's a big city which feels likes a village, and so far I've found it has everything anyone could possibly want. It's even got it's own beach by the river. We cycle along the banks, through cloudy sunbeams and the threat of rain, but it does little to dampen our spirits; even when an epic thunderstorm hits and my back wheel comes off.
The skyline broods in the distance, a fight between sun and thunder. Lightening stabs the earth frequently, a reminder that cycling under these trees might not be the best idea. Raindrops as big as golf balls soak those foolhardy enough to be out of shelter. This includes me, as I've made a break for the bridge to get a beautiful photograph of the dramatic weather. Water stings me eyes and a tram nearly runs me over, but I return triumphant to a none too amused Katty, hanging around like a hooker under a bridge. Only the promise of a beer could cheer her up, and as blue sky peaks through the angry clouds, we sit by the river watching a golden sunset dry the drenched Dresdeners. With an ambient movie soundtrack playing somewhere in the background, I flirt with the idea of never leaving, losing myself in the laziness of the afternoon, and the company I keep. Have I found what I'm looking for this early? I suppose I'll know after a trip around the world.