Hello everyone – nice of you to stop by our blog (again). The year is slowly coming to an end and after a short trip to Otrokovice, I’m back home. The first six months of the #ContiEuropeanRoadshow lie behind us. And what can I say: it was an exciting and thrilling journey. So, it’s high time for a little interim balance, as the show truck and I will be taking a breather in Germany until the beginning of March before we hit the road again! But for now, let’s take a look back:
Ronny Nittmann. Photo: Continental.
Big plans, big success
With the #ContiEuropeanRoadshow, I have to say that we really had a huge agenda. Organizing something on this scale is a challenge itself. The fact that it was the first time for everyone involved in the show didn’t necessarily make it any easier. Especially as this also applies to the show truck, as it has now been in continuous operation for six months straight. So, I’m all the more pleased to be able to say that everything went really well from my point of view. However, the secret recipe for this clearly lies in the collaboration of everyone involved. True to the motto: teamwork makes the dream work. We certainly can be proud of what we have achieved in the last few months!
A solution for every problem
Unexpected challenges are of course just as much a part of a project like the show truck and me. These were of very different kinds: whether customs regulations in the destination countries, sudden defects in the show truck or different expected conditions at the locations themselves (e.g. power supply). But no matter what hurdles we encountered over the last six months, we overcame them with combined forces. The support from Continental in particular was simply worth its weight in gold! In the end, it always depends on how the problem is solved. We managed to find solutions in the background so that customers remained completely unaffected and were not impacted in any way. In short: it went great, can go on like this next year!
Defying language barriers with teamwork
Twelve destination countries visited and every single one was great and fun. There wasn’t a single one where I didn’t like working together and we were able to adapt well to each other everywhere. The warmth of the Continental people on site, but also of the organizers and customers, was extremely helpful. I was welcomed everywhere as if I had always been part of the team. Despite the language barriers – and there most definitely were barriers – I was always included in all processes and stuff. Even if hands and feet were occasionally needed…
A lot of hospitality against homesickness
Even though I had a lot of fun in all the countries and was able to discover and learn new things, I have to admit that two absolute favorites stand out for me. If you’ve been following my posts closely, you may have already guessed it: the Baltics and Turkiye. The decisive factor here is the local people, whose warmth, commitment, and friendliness were simply unbeatable. They simply did much more than they had to. The whole thing was rounded off with a lot of enthusiasm and fun – we laughed so much!
I’ve been on the road for six months now and haven’t had much time for private life, but somehow it doesn’t feel like that long. Why? Because I’ve also made friends in the destination countries, some of whom feel like family. I did and experienced so much with them that there was hardly any time to miss those at home. Nevertheless, there were of course moments when I missed my daughter or my boys from soccer, for example. My tip: keeping up to date with pictures and videos helps immensely! Besides, the reunion was all the better…
A picture with my buddies in Lithuania from my very personal collection. Photo: Ronny Nittmann.
Old habits, new priorities
At the beginning of the #ContiEuropeanRoadshow, I told you about my routines on the road and how I wanted to maintain them as much as possible during the trip. And that has also been a challenge over the last six months! Working out at the gym, for example, was rarely possible. Firstly, because there often wasn’t one nearby, and secondly, not all gyms offer day passes. Finland was a very special case: although there were many gyms that met both criteria, payment in advance was only possible with a Finnish bank account. This is because you get a code with which you can enter the studio after payment. Unfortunately, standard international credit cards are not accepted as a payment method.
Ultimately, however, I have to say that this is perfectly fine. After all, I went jogging quite often and I didn’t bloat like a lump of yeast. Although I ate really well and a lot… Incidentally, that’s also one reason why I often threw my sports plans overboard. The fellowship with the local people was simply more important to me.
Different countries, different manners?
I could go on at length about all the good food, which was a highlight just the way I like it – literally. Of course, this also includes my beloved cake. And I have to say, the differences between the countries are not that big. In Turkiye, the cake is sweeter than in Germany, but Denmark and Norway, for example, come pretty close. But I’m also very easy to please: anything sweet is mine!
Furthermore, getting to know people with different nationalities, mentalities and cultures was incredibly exciting. And I have to be honest: we’re not that far apart (in Europe). It was really fun to be able to make more and more comparisons myself. And I’ve concluded that we’re all human in the end… Except for my faithful companion Scrat – even though I like to treat him that way. He has accompanied me to all countries and was also very happy. Except in Turkiye, where he had to sit in the back for once. He hasn’t talked to me since then, but I should be able to put that right with a Christmas present.
My faithful co-driver Scrat. Photo: Continental.
Gathering strength for what’s to come next year
If I had it my way, I’d like to visit all twelve countries again. But you clearly need the time to do that, which is why I would limit myself to my personal highlights. The cities of Vilnius and Kaunas in Lithuania, Tartu in Estonia, and Warsaw in Poland, for example, are at the top of my list. And to be honest, I wouldn’t have thought that beforehand. In contrast, I’ve always wanted to go to Sweden, and nothing changed after my visit – I’d love to go again and again! The same goes for Norway, which I’ve completely fallen in love with… One or two of these countries might also be interesting at a different time of year, like in winter.
Well, for now it’s time to take a break until the beginning of March. And that’s a good thing, so I can take a deep breath and recharge my batteries. All in all, the last six months have been a complete success. I hope that it continues next year! But you’ll certainly be hearing from me before then…
Until then – see you on the road,
How did you like the first six months of the #ContiEuropeanRoadshow? Let me know in the comments!