Monday, 15 August 2016

And into the heart of Eastern Europe

First we leave the nice Serbian town of Subitica. 


With nice tree lined streets 


Thentoday   was Serbia, Hungary and Romania. I feel now as if I have a good in depth understanding of Hungary - we were there after all for four hours!  I did not quite get on top of the language - put it down to my getting old. Mind you, when you see place names such as this. Particularly the second one 


Thank goodness for a GPS!


We had not intentionally  planned to go to Hungary but it was the quickest way to Romania. Both the Hungarian and the Romanian border checks were slow and thorough - it would seem as if the refugee crisis has tightened things up so what. There were signs of refugee camps at the Hungsrisn border. 

At the border crossing I had to produce bike documentation for the first time. No flexibility there. However the New Zealand registration paper seemed to be official enough for them and the customs officer was more interested in the bike stickers. 

So we enter Romania 


And ride down for about 150 km into Romania to Cluj Navoca - a university town. Along the way we pass these ornate houses - we were told later that they are built by the gypsies ( and often not finished or lived in ) 



Cluj Navoca seemed a nice town  we stayed in a delightful private hotel and mine hosts could not have been more helpful and nice. 


So day 2 in Romania. I get some money from the ATM and get my head around the currency. The currency used to be the Leu. Then it got devalued to the Liu  As I understand it the old paper currency beacame as valueless  as Leu paper! But it is really now  called the RON. I thought  that was an octane rating. However you have to like the currency when a nice  B and B 4 star hotel is only NZ$90.00 per night ( including breakfast ). Today a coffee was $NZ1.00 ! 

Traffic officers everywhere. And I got sucked in big time today. I saw a traffic car parked at right angles to the road and on side of the road. I braked quite heavily as I think I was speeding. As I passed it I did a double take. It was a cardboard cut out !   It worked! One - nil to the Romanian traffic police department. 

Today we were off the tourist track and winding our way thru the Carpathian Mountains of Transylvania. It was a lovely contrast of the old and the new 


We meet some Romanian motorbikes  having morning tea 


And we head up into the hills 


An amazing church in the back of beyond. Apparently the main church is the Russian Orthodox. Mind you, as we move at pace thru Romania I guess we could call be entitled to call ourselves "Rushin' Unorthodox!"   Sorry about that folks- I just had to slip it in!  


And another good day has been had. Tomorrow it is into the higher mountains of Transylvania and the day after tomorrow it is a visit to Dracula's castle. Be warned! 

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