Harry Keller

October 3, 2022

↬ September 2022: hiding in the English countryside

Hey y’all,
my plan was to write my usual September recap, with a brief personal intro and then some updates and then some links and then some photos. In fact, I had already written it: It contained thoughts on how Figma sold to Adobe, how Pitch fired a third of their employees, it talked about ergonomic computer gear and that I’m not quite ready for the Moonlander yet, how Patagonia changed everything about their company (but also nothing in terms of power distribution), how Ethereum merged, how Democracy Next launched, that The Verge did the most exciting editorial redesign, how Comradery is a new platform co-op and that we need more of those, that we have a book club meeting upcoming, that Hannes released a new typeface called Match and how I dig the retro tech vibes of Berkeley Mono, a link to how QR codes work, how (to my own surprise) I’m enjoying the Lord of the Rings series and also to share this incredible essay and this short video you’ve surely already seen. But all this wouldn’t capture what my September was really like and what was on my mind, so that draft goes in the bin. Bye! 🚮

My actual September was spent in France and England: four weeks of holidays and workation, a couple of days spent in Normandy and three weeks in the Peak District. My girlfriend and I have been to the UK many times, but never this long and never with a dog. So instead of booking the usual flight (you can’t fly into the UK with a dog), we rented a car for a month, drove through Germany/Belgium/France, stayed in Barfleur, then took a ferry to Portsmouth and drove up to the Peak District to finally arrive at our little cottage in Bakewell. Phew.

The next three weeks consisted of … 
  • hiking ~10km almost every day, only looking at the phone to take photos or to find the next trail
  • eating a ton of cake and Bakewell tarts
  • watching our dog Freddy zoom across greenest meadows, up the steepest hills, through fairytale forests and along narrow footpaths
  • admiring picturesque villages, seemingly unchanged for hundreds of years
  • eating lots of Cornish pasties and Terry’s chocolate oranges
  • seeing rainbows and so, so many stars
  • hiking around the Ladybower Reservoir and learning about the flooding (and occasional resurfacing) of Derwent village
  • wondering why there aren’t as many public footpaths/bridleways in Germany and why we have fences when you can have beautiful stone walls seperating plots of land
  • saying hi to many, many sheep, cows and the occasional donkey
  • strolling along the Monsal trail, an old railway line
  • eating free apples people generously put outside their cottages
  • saying sorry and thank you way too many times
  • visiting Buxton and meeting a friend in Sheffield
  • buying cake, coffee and crisps in an honesty shed/shop near Hollinsclough, completely unsupervised
  • visiting Chatsworth house and getting lost in the garden labyrinth
  • being terrified of driving on the left side with a German car, but quickly realizing that it’s totally fine
  • drinking Irn Bru and discovering I might like PG Tips
  • buying too much
    (”it’s crumbly”)
  • wondering why English cottages are so cozy
  • playing Ocarina of Time in the evenings and reading Station Eleven
  • ordering a carry-your-dog backback and then not needing it ever
  • walking around the buildings of an abandoned lead mine
  • eating vegan fish + chips and bringing back some malt vinegar
  • watching GBBO live 
  • getting Freddy some dog ice cream in Castleton, eating vegan cheese sandwiches at Hassop station
  • overlooking the vast valleys from various peaks and loving the otherworldly landscapes at the top
  • being glued to the BBC, as the Queen passed away the afternoon we arrived in the UK
  • rewatching The Crown, The Queen and Young Victoria
  • eventually returning through the Eurotunnel

In case you couldn’t tell: it was magical! And now we’re suddenly back in Berlin, wondering whether this month-long adventure even ever happened. Some photographic proof can be found on Insta: Normandy, Peak District 1, Peak District 2


Somehow, and maybe for the first time, I’m not excited to be back in Berlin, which is an odd and new feeling. Oh well, something to ponder over the coming months. 🍂

Did you go on an adventure this year? Are you happy where you live?

I hope you’re well and healthy! Take care and talk soon,

Harry Keller
@harryfk | .com | newsletter

About Harry Keller

Heya, I’m Harry, a software developer in Berlin/Germany—he/him, *351ppm, feminist, cooperativist, dogfather. I recently co-founded the somewhat utopian design+tech cooperative Village One and also diesdas.digital before that. You can learn more about me on harryfk.com and we can connect on Mastodon, Twitter, BeReal, PixelfedInstagram. Or you can simply read my newsletter below! 💁