EU Day 43-44: Riding Zajecar (SRB) to Drobeta-Turnu Severin (ROM) plus rest day

Strava’s Gran Fondo challenge for August is to cycle 150km in one ride, or you could do it over 24 hours, but I prefer to just knock it out in one go. Leo was happy to pass on this event, so we rode to the first checkpoint at 55km, then split our paths afterwards.

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It was nice to ride solo again and really immerse myself in the empty fields surrounding me. There were plenty of wild flowers, farms and small towns in between, and it didn’t rain again until the final 10km. The only unpleasant part was when I rode past a tip full of burning rubbish and the dogs which seemingly guarded the trash piles chased me for a bit. On the other side, Leo came across large and aggressive packs of geese.

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I was happy to be back on the Danube River, it had been a month since I last saw it in Hungary.

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I arrived in Drobeta with 16km to go, so I did laps of the area surrounding our hotel and took some pictures along the way. The city felt very strange and it’s hard to explain, but the things I noticed right away were: the streets were in grid formation and each intersection had four zebra crossings and a pair of stop signs, there were perfectly placed parks to create symmetry and the traffic lights would run red for 85 seconds but only be green for 25 seconds. It was weird because the town was so quiet and empty, that all of these traffic things didn’t make sense.

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I don’t remember the rest of the evening, probably just lots of eating and lying down. I slept like a log, but even though I was mega tired, I couldn’t sleep longer, so I was lethargic for the whole day. We planned an easy day, some light sightseeing and then attempting to find an Asian restaurant.

I saw the main sights yesterday, but we climbed the water tower, which has artwork at each level. Most of it was very grim and a little creepy, but the view from the top was cool.

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For lunch we looked for a Chinese restaurant that came up on Google Maps, previously we’ve found unusual results like this to be completely false, so we were sceptical. Normally we would eat the local cuisine, but we were missing our home food. We declared the search as a failure, but found the remnants of where it used to be. Seeing this picture still makes me laugh really hard, maybe I’m the only one that finds it funny.

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After that we napped and chilled out before our 130km ride tomorrow. It probably wasn’t wise to have so many big riding days crammed together, but I guess I was very optimistic when I wrote our itinerary.

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