The Balkans

7 July

Strange structure on the way ?

Timisoara to Budapest

How lucky and fortunate are we to have this sensational opportunity to travel half way around our stunning world and meet so many people who are just like us and want to get on with their lives. Maybe all politicians should make this part of their societal obligation of meeting and seeing other worlds as they are and it may remove so much greed and power lust from them –  that is if they are capable of seeing beyond their own ambition.

Lunch in Vienna with travelling companions

Despite the personality mixes, time and distance involved in this adventure we are a cohesive group  who have remaind steadfast in  helping one and all. We have meet wonderful people who have become our friends by sharing in a multitude of experiences and emotions. What else can anyone ask for…commonality binds us all.

The daily trips are around 350 – 400 kms this is the only way we can reach our destination in Abingdon and the driving is fast and furious the trucks are disciplined staying in their designated lanes and at their speed but the speed on the freeways ranges between 130 – 140 kms. Little Shamrock is doing a sterling job maintaining a very respectable speed of 120-132km but we are sitting on about 120-125km – not bad for a car from 1969.

The border crossing was very quick  and the freeway smooth and well signposted

Budapest is a stunning city and one we would like to revisit. Highlights have included taking the tram into the centre of Budapest, a boat cruise on the Danube and a ride on the Hop on and off bus. This way was a terrific way of viewing all the major sites, buildings and attractions. All ready for a return visit.

A delightful surprise came from the Hungarian MG car club who stopped by our hotel for a visit bringing their immaculately kept cars with them including a Triumph Spitfire, a MGB roadster and a MG Sprite  and MGB GT. Many photos were taken and will be shared. All could have taken out Concours prizes with their cars. It is a young club and we wish them will in their future growth of the MG family.

Once again we felt humbled by the efforts people have made as we have travelled the Silk Road, including Suzanne who made each car a little memento from Hungary. We hope to welcome some of them to Melbourne one day.

8 July

Budapest to Wein

Only a short drive today of about 2 ½ hours on the freeway at a rapid speed. Surprisingly it is still hot – in the 30’s.  As we cruised down the freeway we were surrounded by conifer and birch forests, wheat and sunflower fields yet again, passing by castles and Schloss peeping above the greenery.. We were fortunate to be able to check in immediately and this gave us time to take the Metro into Stephanplatz the centre of this gracious old city.

So many coffe cafes and restaurants to choose from but we did go back to Demel for strudel and coffee. Here we watched the pastry chefs creating an amazing cake of a pond complete with a boy and his net, fishing for frogs, lizards and fish. Absolute work of art! After a walk and ride on the Hop on and off bus taking familiar sites of the Spanish riding school, the Belvedere, Schonbornn Schloss, and Shopping malls.

Today was a relaxing day enjoying good food, wine and friends as we wandered around – tomorrow we embark on one of the longest drives of the trip.  704 kms to Heidelburg!

9 July

Watching horse drawn carriages while having lunch inVienna out side Cafe Mozart

Wein to Heidelberg.

Off early for a mammoth drive of just over 700kms, fortunately it was Sunday and trucks and heavy transports aren’t allowed to travel on the freeways! What joy! but other cars were passing us doing well over 150- 200+ kms but the good old MGs held their own. Peter was leader for the day and was vigilent about stopping every 2 hours for a break, rest and refreshments. We made it into Heidelberg 7 ½ hours later. This gave us a chance to explore this charming ancient university city. What a joy to walk around and take in the shops and restaurants, beautiful churches and buildings of this pedestrian oriented city.

Once again we were met by a MG car club member who enjoyed a meet and greet with us.

Another place for our must return to list.

Views of Vienna

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