Brückenschläge und Schlagworte

Instructions for a Bridgekeeper

As much as I love travelling solo, I am in the process of looking into finding travel buddies for my next adventure. Today I got into thinking what it would actually mean for someone else to travel with me. I am sure that in my time I must have developed a few spleens and weird habits when travelling on my own, and I think everyone deserves a fair warning. So here they are, the instructions on how to deal with the BridgeKeeping Travel Buddy (BKTB).

„Dear customer,

congratulations on obtaining your very own BKTB. Handled with care and maintained properly, you will enjoy this product for a very long time.

When choosing a travel destination, keep in mind that the BKTB must be exposed to travel to Poland at least four to five times a year and to another Eastern European destination of your choice once a year. Also make sure that the BKTB goes on at least one vacation a year that will allow her to return to Germany with a tan that will prompt people to say that she looks like a gypsy.


Make sure that the BKTB has access to coffee in the morning, preferably Espresso or Bosnian / Serbian / Turkish coffee. The BKTB does NOT run on instant coffee. You run the risk of causing severe damage to the BKTB’s system if you try to fuel it with instant coffee. Also, keep in mind that while the BKTB doesn’t need much food during the day when travelling, a feeling of hunger can overcome her within seconds towards evening. When this is uttered, find food as quickly as you can or else run for dear life lest you want to be object to a very moody BKTB.


While the BKTB will help you to just wander a place without orientation and finding incredible places, and while the BKTB has a fairly decent sense of orientation, she will not ask for directions unless she has to. You being there will mean that she doesn’t have to, because it’s your job. She’s weird that way. The BKTB will, however, randomly chat up strangers in coffee places, trains or other ways of public transport, on park benches or in line for a museum. If those strangers are locals, she will have annoyed them with a gazillion questions about the culture, the history and the minority politics of the country you are in before even having asked the stranger’s name. Yeah, she’s weird that way, too.

On the other hand, the BKTB needs her quiet time. Bring her to a religious site or a spectacular place in nature (a beach will always do, but mountains work as well!) frequently during your trip and just shut up for a bit so she can hear her own thoughts. Don’t take it badly if she wants to wander off on her own for a bit. It’ll be for your own good if she does.

Mariella in Butrinth, Albania

Credit for this pic to my friend Steve

If you’re female or gay, the BKTB comes with an option of daily cuddling / hugging. Actually to be honest, she comes with that option if your a straight man, too. Hell, the important question is probably if *you* come with that option!

The BKTB will express the urge to sing out of the blue frequently. The best way to deal with this is to find someone who can play the guitar and an adequate situation for singing, such as bonfires, balconies or terraces, beaches and the likes, or at least a karaoke bar. You do not have to provide lyrics since the BKTB knows almost all of them by heart.

Credit for this pic to my friend Julia

You have now been warned. Enjoy your travels.“

What is there to consider when someone travels with you?

12 Kommentare

  1. Sounds like we would be excellent travel buddies!! I also require good coffee and quiet time. Where do I apply? 🙂

    • bridgekeeper

      Januar 22, 2013 at 10:13 pm

      „Coffee and quiet time“ sounds like the title of the book the two of us would write after we went travelling together – in Eastern Europe, no? 🙂 Have you had the Balkan coffee? It’s so good…

  2. Sounds perfect to me, please let me know when your next adventures starts 🙂 (and really, who drinks instant coffee??!!)

    • bridgekeeper

      Januar 22, 2013 at 10:15 pm

      The next adventure is due in late March, but stuff keeps getting in the way of finally booking… 🙁 I know, WHO drinks instant coffee? There must be a lot of people who do, because appearantly it is very often acceptable to just have instant coffee in hostels and not the real deal, so not enough people seem to be complaining.

  3. Hahaha! Great post! I am SO applying, sounds like a perfect travel buddy to me, and yeah I like you weird like that 😉

  4. You made my day! Brilliant and funny text!

    • bridgekeeper

      Januar 22, 2013 at 10:16 pm

      And your comment made mine, Aga – thank you, I’m really happy you liked it!

  5. Hi there i am planning on going to Netherlands this year if you are interested in going its my first time there.

    • bridgekeeper

      Februar 16, 2013 at 5:46 pm

      Hehe, I didn’t think people would take this so seriously 🙂 thanks for considering me a worthy travel buddy, Kay! By the looks of it I’m stuck on solo travel for a little while yet – especially in Europe there are just some things I need to do on my own. But once Africa is back on the table, I’ll let you know 🙂 I hope you enjoy the Netherlands, I’ve actually never been there either *shame on me*.

  6. I am ready apply and I am straight. What is funny is hugs are good from all people so I never judge. I just feel the warmth of good people. Currently on a journey myself but I find myself seeing much of the world through your writing and pictures. Articles are written with such depth, quite often I feel I am there present. Can smell the water, taste the coffee. As with every journey it begins with the first step. Look forward to more bridge crossings.

    • bridgekeeper

      März 1, 2013 at 1:55 pm

      Thank you for those kind compliments, Steve! It is great to get feedback like this, that my writing is vivid enough for you to experience what I’m describing. I’m happy it could do that for you!

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