The Company You Keep

By Stephen Ewashkiw | September 16, 2013

Last night, post bachelor party, I taught yoga. Since I knew the class was on the books I made sure I paced myself at the party, got enough sleep, and was fighting fit by the time class rolled around at 8:00pm.

The highlight of class, for me, was that one of my LA students was there. Dylan and I have been hoping we would cross paths somewhere, and since he is often on the road drumming in various bands, it seemed likely. When we realised we would both be in Berlin at the same time I was pretty excited. Dylan has been a regular in my classes at Urth for a long time, and I am used to seeing him several days each week. After class, Dylan and I made plans to meet up today so we could catch up.

We ended up at Café V and had a great afternoon catching up on each others’ lives. I love that the world is now so small that no matter where you go, someone you know is just around the corner. I miss LA, but sitting with Dylan, talking about life, friends, and the world, it reminded me that it doesn’t matter where I am, or where my bike takes me.

As my philosophy teacher Douglas Brooks is fond of saying:

You are the company you keep, so keep great company.

Wherever I go, wherever Dylan goes, or Jane, or James, or Jesse, we will always have each other in our hearts, in our minds, and when the world spins in just the right way, we’ll get to enjoy each others’ company once again.

Meanwhile, Somewhere Near Potsdam…

Jane says:

215 km so far this weekend.

When I talked to the campsite bike guy this morning, things didn’t bode well. He looked at me blankly, looked at my broken chain even more blankly, fished around in a toolbox he’d clearly never seen before, and then kind of shrugged.

Yup. Even if he’d had a spare link, I’m not sure he’d have known what to do with it.

The woman who drives the shuttle bus was very helpful though, heaving my loaded bike into the van, and driving me to the tram. The tram drove me to Potsdam, and a real bike shop. They fixed the chain lickety split, and I was back on my bike! Hoorah.

The ride from Potsdam to Berlin took me through a neighbourhood filled with houses so large, they could each have been a schloss in their own right.

Just a modest home in Potsdam.

Just a modest home in Potsdam.

The bike trail then entered yet another forest. I kept losing the route, partly the fault of bad signage, and partly my unwillingness to check the map quite often enough. Slightly lost, I pulled off at this church.

Church in the middle of a forest, Potsdam.

Church in the middle of a forest, Potsdam.

It happened to be 1pm and the bells chimed and then played a tune for me which sounded suspiciously like Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead.

Riding through the forest, passing by schlosses, medieval gates, and old churches, I kept having to remind myself that I was not Dorothy, seeking The Wizard, or Brienne of Tarth, seeking Sansa Stark.

palace in potsdam

Is it a house, or is it a palace, Park Babelsberg, Potsdam.

Soon enough, I emerged onto the streets of Berlin, and the illusion faded. I zipped through the city streets, a little sad to be at the end of my weekend of freedom, but happy enough to have a comfy flat to return to after this wet, cold ride.  

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