And, home again

After eating breakfast, I went to the train station and Eli went to school.
The train got late, of course, and I came home one hour late. On the first train I chatted with Alexandra, someone I found on the train, and on the second one I met two classmates from high school.
Home, dinner with parents and now in Sweden “for real” for a time!

Hitch-hiking, day five, Sweden

At seven I went into the service station, as I was freezing. After getting my heat up, I started hitch-hiking, with my sign to get to the harbour. I also had my Swedish flag, and thanks to that, a Lithuanian trucker picked me up, as he was going by Sweden on his way to Norway.

He was going by boat, and I went with him to try. Apparently you have to pay by driver, and not by truck, but with two meals and sauna included, I didn’t mind.
While waiting for the boat, the called for the second interview, which you can listen to here:
The food was nice, and the trucker also. Too bad I screwed it up during when going off the boat. I had a another driver to go with, and long story short, I lost my jacket, my scout shirt and some other stuff. It was already half past eight, when I decided to just stop it. I called a friend in Malmö (who at first thought I was in Spain and needed help) and went from Trelleborg to Malmö by bus, and stayed at Eli’s place for the night. I had a really good time, so I did not really care that I missed my hitch-hike, and as I was really close, I would probably just take the train tomorrow.




Not really hitch-hiking, day four, Hamburg

After eating porridge for breakfast, me and Johanna went out shopping some food.
I had been looking at hitch-hiking possibilities the night before, and according to hitchwiki, Köln is really hard to hitch-hike from. I decided to take another sort of transport, in this case carpooling, so that I could stay with Johanna longer.
I found a car that would go from Köln at three, to Hamburg, for 23 euros. I booked it, so now I had plenty of time.
For lunch, we made American pancakes. It tasted really awesome!


I took the train to Lövenich as I would meet up with the guy there. We found each other, and after she dropped off a girl on the way, we went on the autobahn all the way to Hamburg, where he dropped me of at a service station. It was already a bit late, but I decided to try.
I even found a Swedish guy, who were going to Sweden, and he started talking about his hitch-hiking experiences, but after that, said no. Other than that, no luck.
I befriended the girl working at the service station. She was from Kosovo, and really nice. She stopped working at ten, and said that if I was still here at midnight, I could maybe sleep at the floor of her hotel room!

I continued my search, and a Turkish driver, talking in a cell phone, waved at me. After five minutes, he was done, and started treating some sort of fried meet with bread and tomatoes, and Ouzu. He was not going to Sweden, though.
He “asked” (we couldn’t really talk, so signs and body language) if I had a place to sleep, and offered me a place in the truck. As there are two beds, that sounded awesome! I went to the toilet, and came back. What I saw, I was not prepared of. He stood there, t-shirt only, Donald Duck style. The upper bed was not folded down. I pointed at the upper bed, and said “I sleep there?” He said no, pointing down. I pointed down on the chair, and asked again, “I sleep here?”, and he pointed across his whole bed, making a finger to finger side-by-side sign. I said “No, thank you” and left.
On my way back to the service station, I met two Polish hitch-hikers who were going home as they had school tomorrow. I talked with them for a while, they had been up to Amsterdam by hitch-hiking. They also offered me to share tent with them if none of us found a hitch from here tonight.

As I saw one of the persons throwing away the sandwiches from today, I asked if it was possible to give them to me. That was against the rules, but she could throw them in another plastic bag, hint hint, so I could go out and retrieve them later. There were about 15 of them, and after eating some and giving some to the Polish guys, I still had many left.
No lift appeared, so I slept in their tent in the end. It was cold as hell, but better than outside!
I wished I waited another half an hour, just to see if I could have slept inside or not, but I will never know!


Not really hitch-hiking, day three, Köln

I did not really feel like stressing away as I was with a friend and not on a service station. Also, the hostel owner wanted to hear about my trip, so I met him, and talked about how-to and other stuff.
He also told me a bit about the hostel, which he has more or less built, and the place is really arty and cool!







After that, I went out to buy breakfast. On my way back, I saw that I had two missed calls from an unknown number, and the telephone rang again. I was thinking of not answering at first, but I did and that was lucky. I had completely forgot that it was Monday and that I had the first of three interviews!
For my Swedish readers, you can listen on the first part here:
After eating som breakfast, and still taking my time, the clock was already twelve. It would be a bit hard to get out of Paris to get to a good hitch-hiking spot, and as I got two days already, it did not feel that important. I found a bus that cost 38 euro all the way between Paris and Köln, a 7-hour ride. I felt it was good enough, as my next place to go were to meet Johanna in Köln where she is an exchange student!
I talked some more with Aoife, before saying good bye again, and taking the metro to the bus station. I was a little bit in the last minute according to the check-in, but I got on the bus with 15 minutes left, so I felt it was good enough!
I spent the bus ride mostly watching movies (three, even) and eating bread with Nutella before arriving at 2100 in Köln, where I met up with Johanna!
We went to a good hamburger place near her apartment, and it really was too big portions. I thought it would be normal portions, but a small french-fries would have been enough without a problem.

Afterwards, we went to her apartment, talking and planning a bit for tomorrow. As I did once again sleep at a friends place, and not at a service station, I really did not feel like I was in a hurry.


Hitch-hiking day two, Paris

I woke up at 0700, from this (actually cozy) place:


Looking like this:

I started trying to hitch-hike by asking people, and then standing by the road. The aim was Paris, to meet Aoife. After half an hour I decided to buy more breakfast, and then return to the road, so I could eat while hiking. On my way out of the station, holding my sign, a man waved to me, actually looking pretty tired and grumpy. He told me that I could go with him if I did not sleep in the car, and that he was going all the way to Paris. No problem for me! The clock was 0840, and the journey started.
He was actually taking the flight home, but as there were an strike at the airport, he booked a new flight from Paris and a rental car to get there. He was a teacher in economics, and a really interesting person. More than just a ride, I am sure he gave me insight and new thoughts, which is harder to get. As we had many hours to talk, we talked about mostly everything.

He was going to stop at a bath house for some swimming, as he has been driving pretty far. Apparently, the big pool was closed, though, so we continued driving.
We stopped for some small breaks, and also lunch (which he even treated me), but it went pretty fast anyway, and at 1545 I was dropped off in Paris, not far from Port d’Itali. On the metro I met an Iranian guy who was an exchange student, and I asked some questions about the country from his point of view! I went to met Aoife at a friend of her’s place, for dinner and some movies. We had an orchestra on our glasses!

Afterwards, we went to Aoife’s kind of hostel place to sleep!


Hitch-hiking home for a small break

I had already planned to go he for a small break, but maybe for just five days, and not two weeks. When I got the idea to hitch-hike, I wanted to go earlier, as I really wanted my days at home.
Therefore, this day, I went out at 0730, and continued walking. The bad thing was that I was at the wrong side of the city. On my way to the north side, I therefore changed my plan from Irun to Barcelona, and went out on the same road I entered the city by.
It took some time to walk out, but when I was down on the big road, it did not take many minutes before a trucker picked me up! The clock was 0930, so it was still pretty early.
The trucker was from Slovenia, and we tried to speak at English, before I actually started falling asleep, which he did not seem to mind.

He was not going the whole way to Barcelona, but 180 kilometres, before dropping me off after two hours.
This time, it felt harder finding someone, but I continued asking around, holding out my sign, until 1350 when a Spanish man living in Madrid told me I could go with him. He was going to do some work, and dropped me off at a good petrol station along the highway at 1445.
There, I met another hitch-hiker in the 40’s. The guy were going home to Germany. It was a good spot though, because he found a trucker half an hour later, and at 1525 a Polish trucker looking like Daniel Craig picked me up! Same thing here, it was hard communicating, but we had a really fun time. While listening on the radio with bad reception I connected my iPhone instead, and we listened on my usual mix of Swedish metal, trance and Eurovision.

We went pretty far, another 250 kilometres, before he was not allowed to drive more, and let me off 1850 at a petrol station before he continued to the parking lot he was going to stay at over night. He sees a little sad when the good music disappeared though!
Now in Paris, I bought a baguette which I ate with my Nutella. I then continued asking around and trying to get picked up, and after 50 minutes already a guy told me he was going north, so I got another 100 kilometres, and got dropped off at another petrol station at 2100. At 2140 I got picked up by a nice pair who were going to a reggae festival, and I would have loved to join if I did not really feel like coming to Paris the next day. I got another 50 kilometres at least, but it was getting too late, as the time was 2200 when I got dropped of.
I continued asking around, but as it was Saturday, most truckers had to rest the day after. I did meet two nice truckers I had met earlier during the day, though, so I spoke with them in English and German. As I did not have a tent or anything with me, they offered me a place in the trailer, and I gotta say, I slept really well in there! Too bad I had forgot my socks, but I wrapped my feet in my scout shirt, and kept warm. Cool day!