10/10/2013 – 98 days/11132 miles

My plans have changed slightly…I’m waiting to get a visa for India, and this involves sending my passport to the office of a 3rd party company in Houston that doesn’t seem nearly as organized as they should be.  I was hoping I could just have stopped at an Indian embassy somewhere in Europe and have it taken care of there, but this seems to be the only option.  So I sent my passport to my parents, and they sent it in to the company that will supply the visa, and once they get it back, they will ship it back to wherever I am at the time.
With my passport in Texas, I can’t leave the Schengen zone, so while I wait out the visa process, I’ve decided to go back to the Czech Republic and work at a farm/vineyard/winery.

10/05/2013 – 93 days/11132 miles

From Zakopane, I continued north to Gdynia to stay with a friend of a friend.
While there, my friends/hosts/tourguides Krzyzstof and Bart showed me around Gdynia, Sopot, and Gdańsk…tricities on the sea.  I had a couple days there to get shown around the area with good food, good beer, and great riding through the city, which makes riding around a city in the US feel like kindergarden.

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09/28/2013 – 86 days/10118 miles

imageI’m in Zakopane, Poland, in the Tatra Mountains, near the border with Slovakia.  I love it here, but unfortunately, it’s still raining quite a bit.
It’s absolutely beautiful, and pretty cheap too.  Sure it’s offseason, but even in the offseason in a similar town back home (say, Breckenridge), a hotel room hasn’t been had for $13 since 1947.  And then there’s the meals…amazingly delicious, and huge meals, all at TGI Friday’s prices…and good beer for cheap too!
And after a day of hiking in the cold rain, nothing beats a nice porter, with a garnish that’ll make you feel like you’re on the beach.
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09/22/2013 – 80 days/9909 miles

In the last two weeks, the weather has consisted mostly of rain…maybe a few hours of sun here and there, but mostly cloudy and rainy.  Riding isn’t as enjoyable; checking out a new city isn’t as enjoyable.
But thats the extent of my complaining…Back home (around Denver), they’ve gotten about 2.5 shit tons of rain, so overall, I’m fine with the weather I’ve had here.
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09/20/2013 – 78 Days/9909 miles

Auschwitz…as expected, it was spooky and depressing in a way that words can’t describe.  I don’t think I’ve ever been anywhere that weighed so heavily on my mind, and it continues to after leaving.

Visiting the Dachau concentration camp a few years ago was rough, but Auschwitz was on a whole different level of scary.

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09/17/2013 – 75 days/9600 miles

I vaguely remember hearing of the Sedlec Ossuary in the past, but basically, all that I knew was that there was a church somewhere with a bunch of bones in it (my parents probably should have given me the middle name “Britannica”).
Its located in the town of Kutnà Hora, just a little east of Prague, so I made the quick trip over there.
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09/16/2013 – 74 days/9600 miles

For a while now, I’ve been excited to get past Germany. There was a lot that I wanted to do up to that point, and I’ve had an amazing time up until now, but I felt like leaving would be a bit of a turning point for me, for a few reasons. First, I don’t have any friends to go visit anymore, so everyone is new, at this point. Similarly, everything is new…I spent a couple weeks in Germany a few years ago, I understand a tiny bit of German (and speak even less), so it’s not as big of a challenge as other places could be. And finally, though this is purely speculation on my part, I feel like things, as a whole, are going to be getting more different than I’m used to, having spent my first 30 years almost entirely in the US.
So, off to the Czech Republic I go!
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09/14/2013 – 72 days/9339 miles

Unfortunately my plans to spend the day riding through the Alps didn’t quite work out…Light rain in the morning got heavier as the day went on. Between this, ~45degF temps, and not-so-magnificent views of fog, I cut the loop short and headed to Munich.

Munich is another place I’m seeing for the second time, and I enjoyed it as much as the first. It’s a bit more quiet and slowed paced (both in a good way) than Berlin…it feels a bit more traditional.
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09/11/2013 – 69 days/9188 miles

Although three nights in Berlin allowed me to see a lot of new things, I could’ve easily stayed a lot longer. I don’t get as excited about seeing new cities as most people do, but there’s something different about Berlin…I’m sure I’ll be back again (maybe multiple times) one day.

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09/08/2013 – 66 days/8606 miles

Berlin has been a great destination. Since getting to Europe, this has been the first city that I’m revisiting. I notice a slight feeling of nostalgia and comfort coming to a place that is a little bit recognizable. And seeing some places that I had seen on my prior trip here was nice, whether it was the Tiergarten, which should be on the must visit list of anyone coming to Berlin, or a random bookstore in Savignyplatz that I happened upon with an old friend three years ago.

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