Isby On Tour
Isby Report 42: Southern Romania
Southern Romania: Drum Bun! (Romanian for a good trip)
With full power into a folkloric festival, comfortably through the Danube Delta and visually on the moon!
The country life hits us with full force. Already on the first morning in Romania we are awakened by the noise of sheep. We are surrounded by them! The shepherd wishes us a good morning and smiles, then pulls away with his sheep herd and 5 dogs. In general, the time seems to have stopped in Romania 50-100 years ago. Horse-drawn carts roam the streets, beautiful vegetable gardens lie in front of the small, colorful houses, cows, sheep, goats, donkeys, chickens and geese stroll through the villages and of course countless stray dogs. Although these have significantly lost in size compared to Greece.
We are on the road again with our French friends, whom we met in Bulgaria. Actually it should be an hour's drive from our sleeping place to Tulcea, the capital of the Danube Delta, but that can be deceiving in Romania! After a few kilometers, the Navigation system sends us on a gravel road, 11km we should follow this. We stop, consult and decide, instead of the gravel road, to continue on the asphalt road. There will surely be a better way to Tulcea, we think. Not even close! Soon after the next village, the asphalt road turns into asphalt between holes and finally the locals seem to completely avoid the remaining asphalt between the holes and drive straight across the field. This has already created a "new road". Isby is sitting shakily on my lap, because it shakes and wobbles tremendously and finally we have to roll on the "dirt road" as well. It is adventurous, because the mud path is washed out heavily by rain. Fortunately, it is dry today, otherwise we would have been stuck long ago. Simon has to be careful that he stays on the hills between the tracks, if he slides we will fall and that would be the end. After more than an hour (the time we had actually planned to get to Tulcea!) we'll get back to a proper road! The joy is huge and we all congratulate each other. Quickly we want to continue now, but already a few corners further, the police is regulating the traffic. We stop, because driving on is not possible. In front of us people dance in the most colorful robes on the main street.
It does not seem to bother them at all that the car lines on both sides of the dancing group are getting longer and longer. We are of course excited about this kind of roadblock and after the police officer has explained to us that this is the start of an international folkloric festival (on a road in the absolute nowhere), it is clear to us, Tulcea has to wait a few hours more. We turn the vans and steer into the next dirt road, which leads to the festival area. Together with Isby, we explore it. A large, mown meadow with 3-4 food stalls, a stage and people from Romania, Bulgaria, Serbia, Ukraine, Russia and Turkey in their most magnificent robes. Only tentatively we try to photograph the beautiful costumes, we are not sure if people like that. After all, we are the only obvious tourists. But, as so often, this problem is solved by our white weasel. Isby is surrounded in no time by children who want to stroke and photograph him. A win-win situation, the children get pictures with Isby and us the traditional costumes.
In the evening, we finally reach Tulcea, from where we take a boat tour through the Danube Delta, the next day. First we follow on one of the three main arms, but soon we turn off into a smaller arm and again into a smaller one and so on. Soon I have lost the orientation and marvel at this endless water landscape, which offers a unique habitat for many animal and plant species.
Days later, on the way to Transylvania, we spend the night in a small campsite on the edge of the moon. At least that's how the volcanic landscape looks like here. In an area of about 20km2 are the only mud volcanoes on the European mainland. Their equals can only be found in Iceland. It smells strongly of sulfur and it bubbles everywhere. From 3,000 meters depth, gases rise up here, which are released by the mud volcanoes. The mud is said to cure rheumatism, but otherwise this environment is more hostile to vegetation. Only a few rare plant species can survive here.s like here. In an area of about 20km2 are the only mud volcanoes on the European mainland. Their equals can only be found in Iceland. It smells strongly of sulfur and it bubbles everywhere. From 3,000 meters depth, gases rise up here, which are released by the mud volcanoes. The mud is said to cure rheumatism, but otherwise this environment is more hostile to vegetation. Only a few rare plant species can survive here.
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