Landlocked, Locked down and Lakeside.

A book arrived from England, a gift that reflected my activities here during these strange times. It is something of a tribute to the freedom of nature, water and the human connection to our origins. The book, Waterlog, is a rambling journey around the Islands, coasts and waters of Britain , wild swimming and cycling , and it struck a chord with me.

One of the reasons that I had no second thoughts about moving to Berlin-Brandenburg is that my first approach to the area was by air and of lakes, rivers and heath woodland below me. Anyone arriving at night and then travelling around on terra firma would not really see the sheer amount of nature here. Sweet water, verdant paths and space…

Since my partner purchased a small DDR datcha, or garden house/bungalow in January, the race to evacuate the big cities all across Europe has been on the increase. The timing and location could not have been better. The first lockdown effectively ended my City bike touring jobs but the isolation of the bungalow and the lake it is close to provided great opportunities for healthy recreation without breaking any rules on distance. Although not the greatest summer of recent years, the lack of air and road traffic had a profound effect on the wildlife across the world and this was evident from the bungalow in Brandenburg. No con-trails in the sky, more birds, total utter silence apart from birdsong and a more back to basics way of life, partially caused by the closure of nearly all retail outlets.

The book, by Roger Deakin was published over 20 years ago but it remains as timeless as water and swimming. As the second wave of measures and restrictions begins across Europe, the physical and mental benefits of freshwater swimming and also cycling as forms of immersion in nature have never been more important to well being. I would highly recommend reading this book if you have ever felt that you were missing out what comes naturally as a child growing up, exploring…

Published by radicity

Two wheeled Berlin tour guide, first came to Berlin in 2012. Lived in Prenzlauerberg, Teltow and Zehlendorf. Occasional mobile cocktail bar operator.

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