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Published: August 10th 2013
We made the last of our last night in Romania. Having tea at Vampire Camping proved a hit with Ian and Woolly but proved more problematic for me. They only serve one set meal, 4 types of meat with chips and salad for 40 LEI (approximately £7.75 GBP) but being a peskie I had to ask if they could warm up one of my cans so I could join the carnivores. It proved a pleasant evening and as we left the next morning our hosts came to wish us well and safe travels.
Woolly says – Jo didn’t know what she was missing out on, it was a lovely meal and well fed I slept like a trooper. With Ollie checked and panting to go we ignored James directions and headed through the Carpathian Mountains. It’s difficult to describe the splendour that met our eyes, the views were stunning with mountain forests and rock formations, Jo was a happy snapper. For today’s challenge I thought a photo of one of the random cows we kept passing would give her a challenge, all I heard was excuses, the cows were on the wrong side of the road, the road
was to bendy and her final pathetic attempt all the cows have disappeared!
I tried, I really did and you can see my best result so the days challenge was classed as a failure, I like to see Woolly do better in a moving vehicle. The views kept coming as did the twists and turns of the mountain roads, amazing and spectacular as every kilometre unfolded. Through small villages we went with Ollie lapping up the miles and each one so different.
Woolly says – I didn’t want it to end but like everything we slowly but surely found ourselves dropping lower and lower and entering larger and more populated towns, these were still interesting to see as the old ways of horses and carts versus the modern motors became more pronounced in their differences. As we pounded through the south the scenery changed again to a much flatter and agricultural vista, more and more fields of corn and sunflowers flashing past. With nearly a six hour journey to complete before our next campsite (campsites are now few and far between) we took very short breaks from the road for coffee and comfort breaks.
As time flew past and the kilometres disappeared we found ourselves on the edge of Bucharest the capital, much more industrial and suddenly jammed with traffic we found ourselves on dirt track roads with bumps and lumps everywhere.
The roads did seem to worsen and as the land became ever flatter we made our way to the border with sadness to be leaving such a beautiful country and one that we would love to come back to again.
Woolly says – the border was in sight and according to our information Ollie would have to be showered in disinfectant to go through, he didn’t look too pleased at this thought but needs must. We paid our 4 Euros (approximately £3.40 GBP) to cross the bridge from Romania into Bulgaria and off we went across the bridge. Exactly half way across we had a huge sign saying we had changed countries and I missed it.
Woolly missed it because he was too busy ferreting out sweets, bad mammoth! Customs for Bulgaria awaited us and as we handed our passports over they were checked and we were off not a spot of disinfectant
to be seen. Next task was the usual vignette.
Woolly says – Ian parked us up and Jo duly trotted off to obtain the next piece of paper or sticker, five minutes later she returned and instead of the usual beaming smile she was in tears.
It’s silly to get upset at these things but having gone to pay for the new sticker for Ollie the man thrust it at me, asking how much he said 6 Euros (approximately £5.10 GBP) so I handed over a 50 Euro note to be greeted with a mouthful of Bulgarian, saying sorry and I don’t understand then left me being mimicked as he stood going blah blah blah at me and then threw my change over the counter. I collected the notes from the floor and thanked him for his warm welcome to his country and escaped, it upset me to say the least.
Woolly says – Ian and I gave lots of cuddles and hugs and while I thought about going and biting his ankles we set of in a somewhat subdued frame of mind. The roads were awful and we ploughed mile
after mile through pot holes and bumps and huge lumps all we could see was trees on each side of the road, we had no idea what the country looked like at all.
Along with the trees where sign after sign advertising produce from ‘bubbles’ to cars but after 100 kilometres we were still to see a shop a house or any people. Finally a village hove into view, it was deserted had the body snatchers been…..
Woolly says – they might be Vampires!
…. Then we realised it was Saturday afternoon and the world had ceased doing anything! As more kilometres passed we meet a detour which led us up dusty stony lanes which pleased Ollie who thought he was off roading but didn’t help in the need for an ATM. Finally after re-programming James we found a city and cash point, armed with LEV (approximately 2.27 LEV to £1.00 GBP) we started the hunt for the campsite.
Woolly says – I began to think the campsite was a figment of Ian and Jo’s imagination as we drove up and down roads back into the city and
back out again, asked two nice policemen and finally went down the route of if we don’t find it soon we will go for a hotel.
It was hopeless, the camping book gave us a GPS that didn’t exist and in the end Ian searched through James for leads and found what might be the nearest village. We found the village but still no site but as Ian put in a search for local hotels a local man shouted ‘Camping’ and pointed so off we went again.
Woolly says – so close to luxury only to have it snatched away at the last moment! We found the site, Camping Veliko Tarnova.
I went into book us in and asked if they spoke English only to be greeted by the owner who not only speaks English but Welsh as well coming from Cardiff, it’s a small world.
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