I am tapping this post out on my phone, sitting on a balcony overlooking the river Morava. Yes, hotel it has to be because nobody comes to this part of Serbia for a holiday…..therefore no campsites. And this will continue until I leave the country, in two days time.
So in Cuprija (pronounced ‘Shupreeya’) I checked into what appears to be the only hotel in town
but don’t be taken in by the apparent grandeur. This is a big hotel that has fallen on hard times. If I tell you that a single room and breakfast have set me back by only £11, you’ll know what I mean. And there is an air of Fawlty Towers about the place…
I am now ploughing my way SE towards the Bulgarian border, riding on minor roads through dozens of villages, and basically following this rail track most of the day
trying to keep pace with the odd ambling train. But every so often I come across images of Serbia of bygone times, like the old lady and grandchild leading their three goats on reins along the road. Or the horse-drawn cart
that is still typically used for transport. And when this tractor pulled into a petrol forecourt, I understood immediately that this wasn’t his first date with the girlfriend!
He paid for his fill-up, handed the receipt to his wife, then raised the rear carriage before pulling out. It looked like something straight out of a cartoon……but nobody laughed.
And when I saw this sign, written in English, they had obviously realised I was coming
so I checked my speed….And I must say my heart missed a beat when I saw this sign from a distance
….I thought it said 75%! I almost threw in the towel.
On my second break of the day, this old gentleman came up to me and greeted me first in German, then in French.
When he had exhausted the possibilities of his 5 words of French and his 3 words of English, we enjoyed 10 minutes of totally incomprehensible communication…..but neither of us cared. I think he tried to tell me of his hip operation…..I used the crutch as a clue….clever, aren’t I?