Travel story
By JACKSON STRAW

A brief moment of clarity shone through the eternal hangover. At last it was clear. I needed to get out of Berlin. Back to London. Back to work. Back to sanity.

The vast expanse of highway stretching west of Berlin represents a dream common amongst rev-heads and boy-racers.
I must admit, overtaking a police car while traveling at speeds in excess of 100mph creates an unusual sense of satisfaction.
But halfway to Calais, France, the gateway to England, my tired Mini began to splutter.

The brutal reality of the Autobahn fantasy claimed its toll. With no speed-limits to restrict me, I had destroyed my little car. But I was approaching the fringe of Amsterdam. 100 kilometres, or 60 miles, from salvation. An illuminous sign flickered in my mind. The entrance to my haven: Warm faces and cold beer. If I could get to the Flying Pig, or close, this disaster could blossom into a fruitful experience.
Finally, there it was, Vondel Park. Safe at last. There are countless reasons leading like-minded explorers to the Flying Pig. But everyone leaves with tales to tell – a collection of fond memories that can spark an instant smile from wherever it is those roaming Pigs return.