Meet Fritz Fritz Kreis and Thomas Fuerst, two insane Germans who just drove their MINI Cooper east from Heidelberg, Germany to New York City. If you thought that last coast-to-coast trip you took was pretty epic, you have now been officially one-upped…
This ridiculous road trip of all road trips took the two through Poland, the Baltics, Russia, Korea and even Japan. They dubbed the trip, "MINI Goes All Around." From Japan the two had their little MINI flown to California to meet up for day one of the 5,000+ 2014 MINI Takes the States event. On an overnight stop in Memphis, I got the chance to talk to Fritz more after he made me re-cheers him on Beale Street for not looking him in the eye the first time… "You no look me in the eye when we cheers, 7 years bad sex."
After recovering from my mistake and hopefully staving off nearly a decade of bad sex, I asked Fritz every question I could think of about their trip, all somewhat-foolishly based on watching Long Way Round with Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman about a hundred times on Netflix.
To my surprise, Fritz claimed the duo met nearly no resistance at any border crossing, American cash and cigarettes weren't needed to bribe people along the way, and the women in Russia were beautiful, but somewhat cold at first to their German flirtation attempts.
He spoke of shepherds taking them into their homes, the unexpected beauty of eastern Russia, and all of the other exploits from their trip and how excited he was for the American leg of their journey...
Like every country on their trip, the US portion of the journey was full of its fair share of ups and downs like having a window busted and the car ransacked in San Francisco only to win a couple grand at the casinos in Reno the next night. They got to travel the Loneliest Road with 300+ fellow MINI owners, visit the real life "Lerner Field" from Con-Air, and drive through every type of terrain America has to offer.
They were here to see what kind of people America had to offer too. When the rest of us often turned in after a couple beers to attempt a few hours of sleep, Fritz would be walking the opposite direction in search of more women to snap pictures with and beers to drink.
The best part: Fritz and Thomas weren't doing this for publicity or to make a big movie. No, they just wanted to see the world in their MINI. They truly just wanted one helluva road trip. In fact, local reporters always wanted to speak to the two, but between their broken English and the fact one would often refuse to put down his cigarette for the TV crews, they made the "news," relatively little considering how incredible their journey was. They weren't here to make the news, they were here to make new friends and see new places- the real meaning of road tripping.
Today their MINI is on a boat bound for Germany, and the two are recovering from their last few nights in America, spent in NYC. Bon-voyage Fritz and Thomas...
On a side note, after finishing MINI Takes the States, Roadtrippers is now out on Route 66, so follow Austin Coop on Twitter to give him tips and suggestions on where to stop as he makes his way to Santa Monica Pier.