Apologies for the lack of posting, finding snippets of wifi has been quite a challenge.
Tuesday night found us in Split, Croatia staying in a nice apartment owned by a friendly Bosnian family who lived beneath us. Not that it was easy to find mind you. We spent a good 20 minutes driving around the backstreets before Senada, our hostess, came and found us. In the morning Senada made special birthday Turkish coffee and cake and gave Ash a fig cake. Her parents, Mustafa and Sutka (sorry about the spelling!) joined us and we chatted in a mix of very broken English, German and Bosnian (obviously we were sticking mainly to English with a few words of German thrown in). They told us how they left Bosnia during the civil war and it was interesting hearing about the hardship and changes it brought about. There’s still quite a bit on tension remaining and a lot of families have still not returned. It was soon time to hit the road again and they wished us well and gave us a sprig of rosemary to freshen up the car…maybe a subtle hint!
Leaving Croatia we had our first collision! Ash must have left his spatial awareness back in Split and he ploughed straight into a toll booth. Well ok that may be a slight “Henry exaggeration” as he only scraped the hub cap against the booth but still the first ding of the Rally.
We weren’t long into Bosnia & Herzegovina when we ran into our next mini-adventure which took the form of a speeding ticket. Ash the birthday boy was the culprit (naturally!) going 86kmph in a 50, the video footage was damming evidence. We spent about 15 minutes as Ash tried to convince the police that the road was actually an A-road and so should be 100kmph (to be fair by all definitions it was an A-road). Surprisingly they wouldn’t budge and Ash was made to pay the monstrous fine of €26 and we were told that the speed limit in the whole of B&H was 50kmph (30mph). We thought they must be joking but after driving on perfectly good roads for a few hours and only travelling about 100 miles we realised they were not. Hopefully Montenegro would be quicker.
After a particularly hot and sweaty lunch we carried on making slow progress only briefly stopping as Henry threw up by the side of the road. We’ll save you from a picture from what that looked that. His tea withdrawal is taking its toll! But like the proper soldier he simply rinsed with mouthwash and jumped back in the driving seat and set off again. We soon drove into the mother of all thunderstorms and with lightening striking the ground very near us (it was just a shame the camera wasn’t on at that moment) we pulled into a petrol station for a bit. A group of curious police officers came wandering over and were fascinated to hear of our plans for Mongolia. A much better experience than our last encounter with the Bosnian police! But these guys proceeded to tell us how crazy the police were in these parts with quite a psychotic grin, he must have been smoking something.
Montenegro was less eventful than B&H although our hopes for the road were unfounded and the limit stayed mostly at 50kmph. The scenery was beautiful though so it wasn’t too bad but means we’ll be reaching our destination in the dark like every other night.
Chance UK flying high over a Montenegro landscape as we pick up some honey marinated fruit
There was one close encounter with the police when an officer waved us down and as Ash was driving we feared another speeding fine. Thankfully he was just telling us to turn our lights on and to laugh at our plans to go through Kazakhstan. Why does everyone seem to laugh at us?