Leaving Tubingen we were enthusiastic about the next phase of the journey. However our knees were less enthusiastic. We had some reflecting to do and after biking up some hills in the center of Tubingen we really realized that our knees needed a break. Especially because the ascent of the Swabian Alps would be within 30 km.

The break was not only a physical breakthrough, but very much more a mental breakthrough. We can only do this trip if we take care of our body and if we are patient. Also we don’t need to push. We have all the time in the world. It definitely made us slow down and realize what we are actually doing.

We didn’t want to bother Warmshower hosts Sebastan and Sonja again so tried to find a place to stay in Tubingen. This was hard… Luckily we met Sandra and her son Joshua on the streets. We had a nice talk and asked for a place to stay. But she didn’t really know anywhere for us. We walked on and when we walked back she was waiting for us in her office and said we could stay there for the night. We were amazed and very happy with the possibility. It was a chance for us to relax our legs and take it easy. Also the feeling with Sandra was very nice. A pity we didn’t get the chance to talk more and share stories. In the morning a couple of movers did some interesting tricks in front of the office with the truck going one way and the trailer going the other way, almost down the hill. Good for some early morning amusement.

We had made the decision to take it easy and really listen to our bodies. We started the uphill and had a nice but extremely windy day getting up to the plateau. We asked at a house in Melchingen after only 30 km. if we could stay in their shed and they had a circus wagon for us with a small wood oven. It stormed and snowed that evening so we were happy to be inside. In the morning the view was amazing with a layer of powder sugar covering everything.

See our photos from this week

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The following day was almost only slight downhill which made for comfortable cycling, we reached Sigmaringen at the Donau and saw the nice castle from a distance. By chance we asked a farmer if we could stay and apparently that farmer had a long history of hospitality. The farm also was very old and with rich history. We got a tour of the farm and biogas installation which was very interesting.Read more about the farm here.

The weather changes fast from around zero degrees in Melchingen to 15 degrees in Deggenhausertal. The weather was beautiful and we had our first sightings of the Alps. We will cross them in a few days. At around 4 o’clock we wanted to do groceries but couldn’t find an open shop, when we were invited for a cup of coffee by a lady in the streets. We went to her very nice wooden house (part of a foresting company) and enjoyed a Berliner and a cup of tea while chatting. Eventually we asked if we could stay with our tent and we were offered the spare bedroom. Very welcoming and very nice! We had a nice evening chatting about all different things and slept really well in a bed. Also breakfast in the morning was a real family occasion with mum Antje, father Victor and daughter Lisa.

We had been in contact with Alice and James through Warmshowers and decided that it would be nice to have a break from cycling and rest up. This is where we are now in a village called Efrizweiler very close to the Bodensee and the Alps. We have been welcomed very kindly and yesterday enjoyed dinner with a neighboring German couple. The weather is perfect at the moment and we are looking forward to experience Austria and to see what the situation is in the Alps and how we will get through on the bicycles.