Spring meeting 2017

Eleven of us (plus two dogs) met on the week-end from the 14th to the 16th of April in Freiburg, Germany, to work on the preparation of the upcoming Biketour.

The venue was the public café of the housing cooperative SUSI. SUSI is several former military barracks that were bought by a collective using the Mietshäusersyndikat, and association that makes it easier to get a loan for buying houses collectively, while at the same time making sure that these houses can never enter the capitalist real estate market again. The complex is huge, with space for 285 people to live and a lot of green in between the houses. SUSI café is used for public events and to hang out, but because our meeting took place during some religious holidays, many people were gone to visit their families, so the venue was not used for the whole week-end.

For most of the week-end, we were sitting together in the library room to discuss and make all the decisions that needed to be made. As usual, we were typing the minutes into an Etherpad that was shown on the projector, so multiple people could type in the minutes from their computers simultaneously, and people who couldn’t come to the meeting could read remotely what we were talking about, and even type in their comments for all of us to see.

Men trying their best not to look like manarchists (when they realise that there will be no female persons on the photo)

On Saturday evening, we invited the public for an info event with food about the Biketour. Not so many people, only around 7, came, but that was not such a big problem as we had plenty of other things to do.

These are the things that we did and discussed:

  • Introduce new people about the Biketour. 3 people joined the meeting who hadn’t been on the Biketour before.
  • Decide the route. Go through Switzerland, go to Spain, which projects to visit, where to start? In the end we decided on some main places that we want to visit, decided that we will go both through Switzerland and to Spain, and to start in Strasbourg and two weeks earlier than planned so that we can make it to the Vélorution Universelle bike festival in Nancy on time. You can see the final decision on the Route page.
  • Decide on the theme. After evaluation different ideas, we decided that the focus of this tour should be on skill-sharing, under the slogan “Vélo Anarchademy”.
  • How to make the preparation process more efficient? We decided to split the route into segments that are organised autonomously by working groups, and to also create working groups for all other topics. Read more on How to get involved. In general, we need to make sure to have more personal contacts to the places that we visit.
  • Introduction into accounting. We now use gnucash to keep an overview over our finances.
  • We want to print more FCK CRS stickers, maybe with a different colour scheme and a different cycling creature
  • How to improve things that went bad on the tour? Our communication with projects has to be better. Maybe we will have a calendar when which project needs to be contacted again. The removal of EU roaming charges will make it possible to have mobile internet, so we can make video calls with the projects as the whole group before visiting them.

In between there was of course also time for playing games, going for walks around the almost car-free Vauban district, and doing some tests on dynamo-powered USB ports.

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