Benjamin David of Munich, Germany, swims his way to work every day along the Isar River, reported BBC.
Every day, David packs his laptop, his suit, and shoes into a waterproof bag, straps it to his back and starts his journey. “I commute to work not by bus, not by car, but by swimming down our river, the Isar.” The distance he covers is 2km (1.24m) everyday.
A man commutes six hours daily to get to work
“The traffic on the road next to the Isar is so wild that it is no fun. When I’m swimming, I am indeed quicker and also more relaxed,” he tells BBC. He expressed frustration over the stress of commuting on the ever busy city roads.
“In the summer, in the three months, when my big culture project down at the river – the Culture Beach - takes place, I swim every day, sometimes twice a day,” he tells BBC.
While talking about the measures he has to take before he can take off each day, he says, “I have a very cool thing. A young designer from Basel invented it. He asked himself the same thing I did, “How do I get to work dry while swimming?” This is the waterproof bladder which can store all my things. And then you wrap the top closed. By wrapping it, it inflates and becomes like a rescue buoy, on which you can simply float.”
His waterproof storage bag helps in his commute as he can float in support of it alongside the Isar. “I wear rubber sandals so I don’t hurt my feet on glass or old bicycles that sometimes lay in the river. But most importantly, I check the water level and with that the speed of the current and the water temperature. The Isar originates in the Alps and in the summer can be hot; depending on the water temperature I’ll wear shorts or a long wetsuit.”
David explains that Germany’s weather and the temperature of the water are determinants of his style of commute, on hotter days, he opts for shorts, but on colder days, he has to equip himself with a long wetsuit to protect himself against the harsh conditions. He says, “I swim every day, sometimes twice a day. In the winter, I don’t swim all that often, but sometimes I do swim in winter too with a short or long wetsuit.”
“Every now and then people look down from the bridges and laugh or ask what I’m doing. Sometimes I meet people and we go for a swim together. Indeed it is becoming a movement here as people get fond of swimming here,” he explains some of the reactions he gets to his transportation technique.
The Commuters are here to face the music
“When I arrive, and go to the bar in swimwear and order a Cappuccino. My colleagues have to grin as they arrive by bus or car. But yeah, some of them sometimes swim with me because they want to get to know how it is,” he relates. Swimming is adopted by many as a hobby, but rarely by people as a way of movement.
He says, “This idea came to me as the Isar used to be used as a waterway for over 150 years. It was so to say one of the most important transportation routes from Rome to Vienna. They went by rafts via the Isar and that stopped a long time ago.”
“Nobody uses the Isar anymore as a means of transportation so now I’m there by myself to jump in. I wouldn’t be surprised if in the next years, Isar becomes a tech way to commute to work in the morning.”
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