Day 24 started with me having a big breakfast with some other hotel guests I met the night before. Then Rolf, the owner of the hotel, took me back to the Luther-rock as he had promised so I could continue the walk without cheating.
I reached Wittenberg at 16h00 which left me enough time to visit the house (now museum) where Luther lived and worked. It was humbling to see the original documents and hand written notes that still exist after so many hundreds of years. What will be left in 2515 of the writings of the wise men and women living today? Just a copy of a copy of a copy on a computer chip somewhere. Is that still a historical document? Will that still have the same value and significance as the documents I was looking at?
Anyway, I continued into the town itself to visit the church where Luther often preached as well as the famous church where he nailed his 95 Theses to the door and therewith got the reformation going.
Wittenberg is of course full of history of Luther and even the guest house I stayed in had a little Luther statue.
On day 25 I had another perfect timing encounter. I met two Austrians on their bicycles at an intersection. They asked for the road and I could help them with my GPS. The one was a doctor who also does acupuncture, the other a osteopath who also started off as a masseur. We had a good chat about a holistic approach to medicine and healing and they could give me tips on what I should look into to combine with my massages so that they are more than just wellness massages. As it happened, my reservation for the night was in a guest room of the Johanniter Hospital in Treuenbrietzen. I almost asked to see a doctor to look at my aching feet. No, it was not that bad, the blisters are just a nuisance.
From Treuenbrietzen I entered real Asparagus country on Day 26. I knew the day was going to be tough. My next stop would be Potsdam. It turned out to be a looong 46km stretch. As usual I tried to take a proper break about every 10km. For my 20km lunch break I had reached Beelitz and decided I would treat myself to a proper Asparagus meal in a local restaurant. I found an old brewery that is owned by the family in the ninth generation. They don’t brew beer anymore but run a marvellous little restaurant in the historic buildings and garden. I could have stayed longer but after a good meal and beer, I continued on my way. 10km further I put up my hammock and took a snooze. With difficulty I got up to tackle the last stretch. In Potsdam I stayed in a backpackers hostel. Unfortunately one of the room mates snored so hard that the rest of us did not get as much sleep as we had wanted.
I started day 27 with breakfast in the gardens of Sanssouci Castle. There I was, eating muesli out of a cup and a bread roll out of a paper bag under the watchful eyes of Greek goddess statues and fancy marble eagles. While they looked at me, I was looking at the human goddesses jogging past me through the park. Life is good. But the road ahead was still long, so off I went.
It still amazes me how green the German cities are. I was walking through parks and forests most of the time. When I took my 15km break, I left the cycle path and walked a few metres into an area with lots of trees, no sign of the close city life. I could hear the cars but was completely secluded and took a recuperating snooze in my hammock.
And then, just as I wanted to take my 20km break and was turning into a restaurant, BANG, goes the back tyre of my cart. The tube burst less then 15km before the goal post! Eish! The rest of the way I had to go on three wheels again.
At 18h40, after 762 kilometres and 27 walking days I finally made it !!!! Yiiiiihaaaaa, I’m in Berlin!