Road to London - April Love - and Showers
Thursday, April 19, 2012
We had breakfast and thanked George and his staff for the wonderful time we had in Berettjyoufalu and when it was time to leave, the farewell was rather emotional with handshakes and hugs and knowing that we are not likely to meet again, was indeed sad but then we had to move on. Thanks to the modern communication facilities we can still keep in touch through email,etc.
The sky was overcast when we left and after about an hour it started to drizzle. We did not stop as the drizzle was very light and did not affect our cycling or wet our clothes. In fact it was rather pleasant because we could pedal faster without breaking into sweat as it was cool and refreshing. I went into 'sweat control' mode. My regular trekking 'kaki' Goon Heng Kai who had gone on many trekking adventures with me in Malaysia and the Himalayas would understand what it means.
'Sweat control' mode is a condition whereby you indulge in continuous physical activity attaining productivity without sweating. In Malaysia it is rather difficult to achieve it because of the humidity where you can sweat even while just sitting under the fan.But in cold conditions you can achieve that after some practice. Try it some time.
The drizzle continued throughout the morning and the road conditions were good but after going about 60 km and when the drizzle had stopped I was ready to call it a day . We came across a small town after about 50 kilometers but after that, we could not find any place to stop, although there were signs indicating names of places along the highway.
The highway signs were rather misleading. We actually had to turn away from the highway to reach these towns. As a result we pedalled on and on and only found a motel after covering almost 100 kilometers. By then we were tired and hungry.
The following morning we left along the same road and after covering some 40 kilometers we decided to try moving away from the highway and experience life in the rural towns. We reached Cagled some 70 kilometers from Budapest and found that rural towns in Hungary are indeed pleasant places. The houses, like in Berettjyoufalu, are individual structures with a neat garden (lawn?).
Many people move about using bicycles and cycling lanes are everywhere. By now you would have realised I keep highlighting this facility and I hope our city fathers would act accordingly to provide such facility in our towns and cities and encourage cycling. People would be more healthy and the air we breathe would be much cleaner.
Cycling along rural roads in Hungary we passed many charming towns, farms, fruit orchards and vineyards and although it is not the fruit season, the orchards are in bloom with flowers. I believe those with white flowers are apple trees and the vineyards are nothing more than rows and rows of stumps without any sign of life.
In a few months the scenery would change again, with fruits and grapes ready for picking. The scenery is certainly beautiful and different from that we usually see in Malaysia. A pleasant change for me and a new experience for Aede.
April is noted for its showers and the appearance of colours and vibrant activities after the drab and absence of cheerful faces during the cold winter. April (spring) also see the appearance of adolescent girls come to bloom - showing some curves that were not there a year before.
April is also a month for love as my contemporaries would remember the song by Pat Boone - : - 'sometimes an April day would suddenly bring showers ; rain to grow the flowers, for her first bouquet. And April Love will slip right through your fingers, so if she's the one , don't let her run away'. I sang the song at the school variety concert more than 50 years ago and after that I became quite popular among the girls , he,he!
Yes, I am also in love. - with my bicycle that is. - ( what did you expect ? ). The bicycle has taken me to ten countries all these months and I am now getting attached to it. We had some problems along the way but managed to overcome them and I am confident that we can achieve what we set out to do, 'InsyaAllah'. We are now not very far from our goal and I also need your continued support.
We are now in Budapest, the capital of Hungary. How we found this place is also an interesting story. We were riding our bicycles into the city. On entering the city and after asking some people for directions, we stopped at a junction waiting for the lights to turn green, when a lady suspecting that we were foreigners looking for accommodation asked us that question.
Again as fate would have it, she actually runs a budget hostel nearby for travellers and accompanied us to her place. Piroska's (that's her name) Hostel is actually an apartment unit that she had turned into a hostel and it suited our needs perfectly. I have not seen much of Budapest yet, but my first impression of it is very positive. The city has the 'Old World' charm attraction. Judging the place from where we are staying now, we might spend a few days here before moving on.
An emotional farewell with George
Can you spot the Malaysian Flag?
At a railway crossing
Rows and rows of stumps
What a coincidence - Daniel's house number in Prejmer is
591 and George's van number is also 591
These wayside flowers grow wild everywhere
Hungarians are warm. Mother and daughter
team who run the hotel and restaurant. In
Monor, 35 kilometers from Budapest
Vineyards - sans vines
Location: Budapest, Hungary
If you wish to get in touch with Adnan Osman (his personal blog: http://oadnanxtreme.blogspot.com/), you can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, you can reach Adnan through his wife, Marina Wong (03-77856058 or email@example.com) or his son, Adely (firstname.lastname@example.org)