It’s Friday’s summer night. You took it chill after a hard work week and spent time with your friends or better half. You wake up early the next morning well-rested. While drinking a coffee and enjoying breakfast you notice the blue sky. You feel the urge to go outside to spend an awesome Saturday in the greenery. Ready?
Let me take you on a journey of my favorite summer Saturday.
Ever since I moved to Hamburg, I was drawn to electronic music. Infused by meeting new people with different tastes in music, I started preferring the clubs where they played genres like deep and tech house and melodic techno. Compared to the big, expensive mainstream clubs, the smaller techno clubs like the Ego had way more charm and less drunk idiots that were seemingly always looking for trouble.
One day a friend from my Lacrosse team told me about the concept of techno open airs in Hamburg. Apparently, techno collectives exist who organize semi-legal open airs at locations preferably with few neighbors. In industrial areas, under highway bridges or in a forest – everywhere one would probably be alone on the weekends. Then, they would create a private Facebook group or Telegram group and invite their friends, who then invited their friends. On the day of the event, they would then message all members of the group the GPS location and the starting time.
Saturday morning was one of those days. The open-air would start at 14:00 in the south of Hamburg’s harbor. A smile runs over my face because I imagine dancing outside again to good music and with nice people. After a long brunch, I get on my bike and meet up with my techno-interested friends. Everybody is smiling and happy about the awesome weather and because we get to spend the day together. A stop at the supermarket to fetch some food and beers for the day and off we go.
The sun is touching my skin and I breathe in. So that’s how freedom feels? We tell us stories on the ride, make fun and laugh. The atmosphere is great already. We cross the river “Elbe” through the famous “Elbtunnel” (a tunnel under the river) and then we look onto Hamburg from the other side. Amazing view but the feeling of getting out for a while is even better.
Closer to the open air, a wind breeze takes some sounds towards our way. Shipping containers pass us and the landscape becomes even greener. We drive a little faster, excited to finally be there. On the way we see more and more people walking or driving towards that GPS location. Everybody is smiling, open-hearted, telling each other to have fun.
The closer we come, the louder the music gets. We get off our bikes and walk through a little forest. First, we just hear the bass, then, the little melodic nuances of the song. The forest opens and shows a huge clearing. A little tent with a DJ and two sound systems at each side. We are here.
Around 50 people are dancing, some sit scattered around in the grass. Laying out a cover, we drop our bags and sit down. The atmosphere is great. You can tell that everybody is here for the music and the people.
After the first half beer or so I cannot sit anymore. I want to go dancing. A friend of mine feels the same and so we hit the dancefloor. Slowly moving towards the center, we are looking around and other dancers greet us with a smile. The energy is great and we move faster and faster until we are in the flow. The bass massages our bodies and the stress of the week is relieved with every dance step.
Maybe it is weird to think of it that way, but for me, music and dancing are close to therapy. How much better is a bicycle tour and dancing and chilling with friends than a day at home doing nothing?
I would go so far and say that people would generally be happier if they would get out into nature more often and dance.
After the sun goes down and we were on and off the dancefloor for about 5 hours, it’s time to go. We catch our bikes and head home. The drive is slower and quieter than the way here. We are tired of dancing and the summer breeze feels amazing. After a huge dinner, I am the happiest person on earth and fall asleep. What an amazing Saturday!