Four becomes one

I had a lot of fun with the other solo cycle tourers I met. It’s much more fun hanging out in a capital city with a crew of people rather than traipsing the streets by yourself. We left on Saturday. Felt great to be back on the bike. That night I stayed in a campsite in Rackeve with Patrick the Belgian and Ugo the Italian. They originally said it cost 1700 Forints, but then added another 800 for the bike (about a tenner in total). Like it takes up so much space. Jokerz. I was reluctant to cough it up, partly because of the cost, partly because I wanted to cycle a bit further that day. We’d only put down about 60km. The swimming pool, flumes, and sauna probably swung it though…

We met a young French couple who had flown to Istanbul with their 2 year old twin girls, then cycled up to the Danube delta and had followed it back all the way since. They kindly gave me their detailed maps for the Danube cycle path and Bulgaria which they no longer needed.  They also gave some good advice regarding Bulgaria. Apparently the East coast along the Black Sea is very well developed in places with nothing but recently constructed ugly hotels dotting the coast line. Patrick gave me his map for Romania back in Budapest so I am now more or less set for maps although China/Tibet could pose a problem. I’ll see what the visa situation dictates.

The next morning Patrick set off for Lake Balaton, and me n Ugo headed South. We cycled until lunchtime sticking to the cycle path. The unrepentant potholes and subsequent slow pace made me lust for smooth real roads – difficult to come by in Hungary presumably because of the freeze-thaw effect of the cold winters and hot summers. So after lunch we said our goodbyes and parted ways. Two minutes later a Krakatoan thunder clap and quasi-tropical downpour marked the return to cycling solo. Good job I had some smashing trance to get in to…

I put down another 80km that day (125in total) until i reached Baja. A daughter and mother gave me a lift in their transit van to the town’s camp site. I thought to myself if I am more or less following the Danube all the way til at least Ruse in Bulgaria then I might as well go check out Croatia while I am in this neck of the woods. So the next day after i spent a good few hours on the internets, I made my way to Mohacs where I got the ferry across the Danube. Another few hours spent in an internet cafe (definitely regretting not bringing a netbook), and i found somewhere to pitch my tent near the banks of the river. The next day i would cross the border into Croatia…

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