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Hannah: ‘Hiking in the mountains gives focus and space at the same time’

Hannah uitsnede

Role at Bord&Stift: Writer.
Working here since: Autumn 2016.
Which book are you reading at the moment? Be invisible by Murat Isik.

What do you like most about your role at Bord&Stift?

‘As a writer here you can take a look behind the scenes at various organizations and companies. That is really interesting. Then you will look together for the best way to tell a story. That can be a puzzle. Sometimes a bowl of dry information is poured out on me; think of policy texts, endless lists. Then the challenge is to find the core message, a storyline and examples in that knot. And to make something lively out of it.’

What makes you happy at Bord&Stift?

‘I used to think that working in an office would be boring, that you spend years at a desk languishing. I didn’t want that! But Bord&Stift isn’t like the offcie I imagined. It is fun, there’s always somehing going on. Because there are no fixed working hours and we often work with freelancers, people come in and out all day long, and you have a chat with them. The special thing is that, in addition to that freedom, there is also a great involvement in each other’s work and life. It feels like a kind of home, a family.’

What do you do besides Bord&Stift?

‘If I could I’d climb a mountain every month. The great thing about mountain hiking is that it helps me out of my head and into my body. It’s back to basic, you just have to ask yourself if you have the right clothes, enough food and drink and which route you want to walk. In Morocco I was in the Atlas Mountains and climbed the Toubkal, the highest mountain in North Africa. There was a lot of snow, we walked with crampons. Some parts were really steep, then I pushed the tips of the irons hard into the snow and just had to trust them to hold me. Very exciting. As a result, you have no room to worry about other things. And meanwhile, the most beautiful views stretch out before you. Mountain hiking gives focus and space at the same time.’

That sounds scary…!

‘It can definitely be thrilling. I was hiking on La Palma with my brother, we were on our way to a mountain hut. The last stretch – a ledge right next to an abyss – was full of ice. We wondered whether it was safe to cross it, what if we would slide into the ravine. But we couldn’t really go back. Making half-hearted choices out of fear is often even more dangerous. In normal life I can have endless doubts, but in the mountains I find decisiveness and confidence in myself and my body. We conquered that last stretch and arrived safely at the cabin.’

Also read the interview with Fenneke:
‘It’s about making a connection; first with yourself and then with the outside world.’

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