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I reached one of the milestones of this journey, the border crossing from Romania into Hungary. The
Hungarian border guard wished me luck and I was on my way in the second of five countries in my
itinerary. I was feeling motivated and headed towards Szeged. But then I hit a nasty snag.
What I didnt know, and my bike course routing tools apparently also dont know, is that there are many
roads in Hungary on which bicycles (and horses and tractors) are prohibited. At Kiszombor I
encountered one of the signs telling my bike to go no further, so I thought I would simply reroute a little.
Unfortunately, the way the road network is set up, there was no feasible alternative route to get me to
Szeged, unless I made a 30 km detour (no way I am doing that). I asked a local and he said there was
a bike path alongside the road, but it didnt start for another 5 km. So I ignored the signs and was the
only bike on the road for the next 5 km.
The bicycle path that appeared after that was a sight for sore eyes, but only from a distance - once on it
I had to slow down, to spare my bike. Not the smoothest path I have cycled on. Nevertheless it took me
into Szeged the legal way, and I reached my destination for the day.
Not even 10 minutes after we checked in to the hotel, there was a huge thunderstorm, so I counted my
lucky stars once again that I had made it just in the nick of time.
Day 4 - Crossing the first border
Posted on July 11, 2013
There is a certain coziness about being put to sleep by the gentle pitter patter of raindrops falling on
the roof above you, so I had a thorough night of sleep in Lugoj before the ride to Szeged the next day.
This 176 km stage is the last of the “long” ones until I get to Vienna.
My behind is starting to suffer from the first 3 days, which I expected because as an amateur my body
is not used to sitting on a bicycle seat for 6 hours a day. It simply means I will be spending a little more
than usual time standing and not sitting.
It was a peaceful ride out into the countryside and I watched my flat grey companion become smaller
as the sun slowly rose. There was not much traffic on the road so it was blissfully quiet.
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