Monthly Archives: August 2014

Change Stays – Planning all over again!

Everybody knows this situation: you have been planning something for a long time and you are really looking forward to fulfill that plan ... and then, bang!, something happens and you can start all over again! This exactly is the situation we are in at the moment: the Ebola virus outbreak in parts of Western Africa has cancelled our West Africa plans for next year ...

This leads to the general topic of overlanding and planning:

The most important thing actually is to find somebody you can plan with. We are really lucky that both of us have been enjoying travelling for a long time now. Additionally, both of us share the dream of travelling to remote regions and love to meet people wherever we go. This certainly is a wonderful basis to start with.

Planning an overland trip - if you can call it such, as you can't really "plan" or rather should not plan an overland trip in too detailed a way - involves reading a lot of maps and visa regulations, taking climate diagrams into account, contacting tourism authorities and embassies, finding out in blogs and forums what other travellers experienced or suggest, and many aspects more! In the process you'll find out that you're almost never the first person who had a certain idea or stood before a problem looking quite unsolvable. There always are ways!

And then, you can be sure that as soon as you are "on the road", all former plans are subject to change anyway, as the weather, political situations, the infrastructural situation et cetera can immediately change any plan. Also, thinking of a positive side to change, local information can lead to a lot of new plans as well. So far, we have experienced that especially inhabitants of countries with a "bad" reputation in the Western World, intensively try to make your stay in their country an unforgettable one and help immensely when planning on where to go next. They do this in the hope that when back home, you recommend their country to other travellers. Also, fellow overlanders you meet on the road also might lead to more or less drastic changes to your trip. That's why we have never booked a pre-planned overland-trip and are not going to do that in the future! Also, we have decided not to plan trips together with other people. It's great if you meet somebody on the road and go on so well with each other that you hit the road together for some time, but for us it's very important that both parties always can go their own way as soon as they feel it's time for it.

A few days ago, when we got home from Romania, we started the planning phase for our gap year / sabbatical all over again and very openly looked at regions or continents that could be possible destinations for next year. As Africa had been on the schedule for a long time, Southern and South-Eastern Africa could, of course, be one possible destination. It's an impressive region with wonderful nature (just think of the "big five", the Seringeti ...) and also wonderful people and cultures. But, concerning Africa, we hope for the future that in five or six years' time it will again be possible to do a transafrica trip either on the Eastern or the Western Route and we might just wait a bit and keep that plan for our next gap year. Our children will be older by then which also will simplify things immensely.

Then, there also has always been the Panamerican Highway ... We could start the trip in the USA, go up to Alaska and then drive down to Tierra del Fuego in Argentina. This would not be "slow travel" at all, it actually would be rushing through a lot of places and our plan is to experience countries, cultures and people in depth rather than being able to just say, "We've been there, there and there."! So, it looks like we are going to go to South America only. It's also great that it is not necessary to take a malaria prophylaxis in nearly all parts of that region. Travelling with young children, we are very happy to be able to avoid that. And we do have people we could visit in South America as well: Mischa's cousin is married to an Equadorian and Juliane has friends in Colombia.

So, it seems that the current plan is to ship the car from Europe to Manta in Ecuador (a new RoRo-connection by Grimaldi), travel through Ecuador, Columbia, Peru, Bolivia, Chile, Argentina, Paraguay, Brasil and ship the Landy back to Europe from Montevideo in Uruguay. Unfortunately, this will involve extra costs, as - apart from shipping and the flights - Juliane insists on installing an engine-independent air-heating system for the Andes!

We'll keep you updated!

4-wheel-nomads Home Again

Résumé

Four days ago, we have come home again. Now, it's time for a résumé on the trip to Eastern Europe.

As we have stated before, the reputation of the Eastern European countries is far worse than what we experienced as reality. Actually, we found that in most countries visited, the people were more friendly and ready to help than we have it back home in Germany. The costs of living were considerably lower than in Western Europe - still the quality of the products (except probably for cheese and bread) advertized was the same standard as at home. Big supermarket chains such as Tesco, Aldi, Penny and the such are present in nearly every bigger city, so it is also no problem to stock on the products you eat and drink at home if you wish to do so (as stated before, we think it's better to buy local produce at small local shops!) ...

As tourism is not that widespread so far, Eastern Europe and especially Romania and eastern Hungary seem to be insiders' tips still, especially if you travel away from the beaten tracks and don't go to big cities or tourist hot-spots.

Travelling with children was no problem at all, on the contrary, if you travel as a family, you are welcomed even more intensively, because everybody simply loves children there!

The nature and countryside are beautiful and there are a lot of remote places to be discovered hiking, cycling or on horseback ... which we did not do so far as our youngest daughter simply is not yet enjoying that kind of travel.

The Land Rover did its job without any problems. It certainly is possible to travel the same route with a stock car of any make, but the conditions of some roads, especially in Romania, made travelling much easier (and probably even faster) with a high clearance and 4x4 engaged!

 

What was best?

Sóley (what we interpreted from her few words): "Being in the car."

Anouk: "The Wieliczka saltmine-dwarves."

Juliane: "Intensive time spent together with the family."

Mischa: "The wonderful people in Eastern Europe."

 

What would you change for the next trip?

Anouk: "Spending even more time together with the small family only."

Juliane: "Staying longer at certain places and really enjoy Slow Travel."

Mischa: "Going wild-camping and sitting around / cooking on the campfire more often." 

Favorite piece of gear

Sóley (just guessed): "The hammock."

Anouk (just guessed): The "Opinel children's pen-knife."

Juliane: "The Eagle Creek Pack-It Cubes" as they make packing and unpacking clothes so neat and easy. A real space and nerve-saver!"

Mischa: "The Foxwing Awning, as it provides immediate shelter from sun or rain and two of them can be combined (including side panels) to a wonderful tent-like awning comfortably suitable for eight to 12 persons."

The two girls in the hammock.

Foxwing (I)

Foxwing (II)

Travel Costs

Travel Costs

Key:
Life "On the Road" includes food, drink, entry fees etc.
"Other Travel Costs" include ferries, road toll, public transport etc.

Average money spent per day: 80,00 €.

Future Nomadic Plans

Coming back from the summer trip to eastern Europe, it is really sad to hear all the bad news. In western Africa people are dying of Ebola and, according to Medicins Sans Frontiers, an end to the epidemic within the next six months doesn't seem to be realistic. All our thoughts are with our friends' families who live in Senegal and the surrounding countries. Naturally, we have to rethink our travel ideas on the basis of this medical state of emergency and, also, the political situation in many west African and north African countries has not changed for the better!

What other possibilities are there if our (open) plan for Western Africa doesn't work? The Eastern route through Africa has become even more difficult with terror in Syria, Iraq and a really tense situation between Israel and Palestine. Also, the last ferry-link between Turkey and Egypt has been finally terminated last month. So, there are only three real possibilities left, it seems: 1) shipping the Landy to South Africa and from there discovering South Africa, Namibia, Botwana, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Mozambique, Tansania, Kenia and Ethiopia, or 2) shipping the Landy to the USA and then travelling the Panamerican Highway down south, or 3) shipping the Landy to South America and discover that part of the world intensively. What would you suggest?? Give us your ideas!

Also, as we make this blog for all of you, feel free to give us your ideas, comments et cetera concerning future contents etc. Please note that we will unapprove any comments that include advertisements or links to online-shops.

Adventurous greetings,

4-wheel-nomads

Homeward Bound

4-wheel-nomads' camp - laundry day

The Route

After leaving the wonderful campsite "Ons Dorpke" in Kiskunmaja, we slowly travelled westward along Hungarian backroads (sometimes just earth roads). We actually wanted to find a small campsite or place to wildcamp near the Danube river, but due to the immense rainfalls during the weeks before, the Danube ("Duna" in Hungarian) had flooded every single spot! So, on we went ... As we found no nice place to camp, we had to go as far as Siófok at the lake Balaton. That certainly was a culture shock! We simply had been too long in the bush to be able to cope with the touristy atmosphere around the lake.

We left the next morning and went on to Austria. On our way, we visited the Archabbey of Pannonhalma, a World Heritage Site, which unfortunately was not the expected "princess' castle" we promised Anouk but still was impressive.

Suddenly, we were back in western Europe ... This we not only recognized because of the increasing road conditions! Again, it was hard to find some place to stay, especially, as the area south of Graz is quite populated. On a lonely road through the mountains, we suddenly discovered a signpost showing that an inn would be only a few km away from the main road. We gave it a try and it turned out to be just the perfect spot: a young family runs an eco-farm there and they also own a small hotel and restaurant. The place is called "BIO-Hotel - Alpengasthof Koralpenblick". We could camp behind the barn and later had a most wonderful dinner at the restaurant (and breakfast the following morning). This place really is worth visiting! All the food, even the wine and spirits they serve, comes from their own farm or eco-farms nearby or is collected in the wilderness. The whole complex of farm, hotel and restaurant is energy-autarkic. We were the first to camp on their premises, but we still are going to include them into our "camping and accomodation" section. We'll most certainly come back some day!

The next morning we went on through the Alps to the small village of Altenmarkt im Pongau, where we relaxed for another two days on a wonderfully equipped campsite. As the weather was expected to be rainy for the next following days, we went on to meet friends, Karin and Wolfgang, in a small village near the Austrian-German border. Karin is the chairwoman of the small German/Ethiopian NGO "Adigrat Vision e.V." who set up and run a small kindergarden in the northern Ethiopian city of Adigrat. We sat together, enjoying good pasta, wine and conversation and planned how we could intensify our collaboration, as we support this nonprofit association.

As the weather would be rainy and thunderstormy during the complete following week, the decision concerning the route for the next following days was clear: back home with a short stopover at Mischa's 94-year-old grandmother. So, now we're back in Germany with the travel bug still in us missing all the nice people over in Eastern Europe. We definitely will come back!

Visiting friends near the Austrian-German border

Our friends' traditional Austrian farm-building.

Why not?

We love to talk and dream while driving ... When travelling back to western Europe, we philospohied about our way of travelling, children, family life and our gap year / sabbatical which will start in less than one year. We looked back onto the days when we told the first few people about our plans. Strangely, apart from some really close friends, a lot of them just said "how interesting" in that funny kind of tone that actually is wanting to express something else, namely "Strange idea!" or "Have they become nuts?" Others openly stated that this kind of travel is unhealthy or dangerous for young children and thus irresponsible and only egoistically following the adults' plans.

Looking back on this trip and on the other two overland trips we did with our kids actually only encouraged us in following our dreams and going on travelling like this. Even though every trip of that kind certainly is a challenge for both kids and parents (cultural challenges, hours on end driving on really bad roads, setting up camp, packing and unpacking, parents constantly being there for their children), we feel a deep satisfaction that what we are doing is the right thing for us and the kids. Actually, we are counting the days until the "big trip" next year!

The strange thing also is that as soon as we are on the road, the kids behave differently than they do at home. It is as if they throw away the chains "normal" life puts on them and start to be how they want to be. They lose shyness, they relax, they intensively enjoy themselves, they roam around freely and enjoy encounters with a lot of children they can't even communicate with on a common language-base! They want to help and work together with us when we cook, do the washing up, make fire, set up camp et cetera. We feel that they simply grow so much in character with every travel we make!

Anouk devilishly dancing around the campfire one evening

Sóley loves bodypainting!

Anouk at the campfire

New friends

New friends (II)

Sóley singing her favorite pirates' song

Some people seem to think that it is irresponsible, to travel to eastern Europe or Africa with children of such a young age. We definitely have a completely different opinion on that! It is funny that especially people who tell everybody that a "big conspiracy" is going on and that we should not believe in what governments, scientists and the media tell us about whatsoever, believe in what the media tell us about the "dangerous" life in Africa or eastern Europe or the rest of the world outside Europe! We feel that "cultivating" fear makes people only help accept their lives and helps them put aside their dreams into the "impossible to reach-drawer". The world outside is not as dangerous and unfriendly as the media want to make us think! Instead, people will embrace you with openness, interest, helpfulness and friendship!

One could also ask all the people spending their holidays in R******* Clubs with their children, "Why do you work 24/7 and then go to a club of that kind just to give your children away to be taken care of by somebody else so that you, the children's parents, can relax and have your freedom?" Speaking of responsibility and egoism ... where are we here?? (Also, do you know that most of the money spent there does not go to the people in the country but back to TUI in Germany?) Children need parents and our way of travelling makes us be together 24/7 on a very small space, susceptible to wind and weather ... children can't get more from their parents, actually! And children will get to know their parents really intensively and will endure and enjoy all kinds of different situations together with them. And they will learn so much through travelling! That's why we invest (at least) one year of time, money, retirement pay shares etc. in our family-life!

During the last eight years travelling in central America, Australia and Europe, "on the road" we met with carpenters, plumbers, university professors, teachers, doctors, software-producers, writers, old people, retired people, young people, people with or without children, people with handicaps, ... in all kinds of cars and vehicles ... and they all were able to fulfill their dreams of long overland travel! It is possible! You just have to stop thinking why it can't possibly work and start planning! And children simply love travelling and open up doors wherever their parents travel with them!

Please, don't get us wrong here: we don't want to judge others who don't travel like we do ... reciprocal acceptance without the use of thought-terminating clichés would be nice, though! Let's be tolerant and open for different ways of life!

Summing up, we strongly recommend overland travel to you, especially to parents with young kids! Don't let others stop you dreaming and making dreams become reality.

We end this long and philosophical post with a comment by fellow nomads Candelaria and Herman Zapp who have been overlanding with their four kids for the last fourteen (!) years:

If we only do what is normal for others, we'll all end up doing the same, sitting around in silence, wearing the same, in a world without smiles or songs. If only those who know how to do things can do them, no one would do anything, because everyone at some time would have to learn. Don't miss the moment, laugh much, if it's big belly laugh all the better, be a child, without restricting your laughter, spontaneous, fresh. Don't tie yourself to your environment, forget your prejudice, laugh, dance, sing, and you will feel how fabulous it is to be a child once again.

C. & H. Zapp: Spark your Dream, Buenos Aires 2011

Slow Food

Freshly baked rolls directly from the Dutch Oven

This time, we are posting two recipies "from the road" ... Food, for us, certainly is an important part of the travel experience and we love to experiment with local spices, ingredients and recipes.

At the campsite "Ons Dorpke" in Kiskunmajsa in Hungary, actually the most familistic campsite we have experienced so far, we sat around the campfire with the Belgian baker Marc and his wife Ilona whose parents originally came from Hungary. In planning dinner for the next following evening, we decided to cook together and combine Lecsó, a typically Hungarian recipe, with fresh rolls baked in our Dutch Oven (we have a Petromax Feuertopf). The following two recipies were tested on that evening and proved to be a really tasty, simple and cheap meal that can easily be cooked over the campfire / in the campfire ... and wonderfully goes along with a bottle of good Hungarian red wine.

Home-made Dutch Oven Rolls:

ingredients:

  • approx. 800 to 900g wheat flour (that's what we used; I'm sure, you could experiment with other flours as well)
  • 2 portions of dry yeast (roughly the same as 50g of yeast; sufficient for 1kg flour)
  • 3 tablespoons of salt
  • water
  • (1 to 3 soup spoons of olive-oil if you want the rolls to be fresh for another day)

Mix the dry yeast with a glass of warm water and put aside. Mix about one third of the flour with water (if you want to add oil, it's the right time now) and knead it. Then add the yeast and work it in thoroughly. Knead the dough until it has an evenconsistency. Add more flour and more water. In between you add about 3 tablespoons of salt (don't do it before, as it will harm the yeast's activity!) ... At the end of the kneading process, the dough should have the consistency of well-chewed chewing gum (but it should not stick to fingers or the bowl you knead it in! ... if it does, the dough does not have the right consistency!). Let the dough rise for at least half an hour (it's better to give it some more time!).

Preheat the Dutch Oven in the fire for about five minutes (closed).

Cover the bottom of the Dutch Oven with oil and then add enough flour so that the bottom of the Dutch Oven is covered completely about 1 to 2 mm high.

Form small rolls (they should fit into your cupped hands) and put six to eight of them into the Dutch Oven. Dab the top of the rolls with water to give them a brown crust later. Give them enough space to rise.

Put the Dutch Oven next to the fire for another ten to twenty minutes, first one side and then turn around the Dutch Oven after about five/ten minutes.

Put the Dutch Oven in the hot coals and cover the Dutch Oven's top with hot coals as well. If the fire is too hot, add some water around the Dutch Oven (on the fire and NOT directly on the Dutch Oven as that would harm the cast metal!).

After about 15 minutes in the fire, the rolls are ready.

Preheating the Dutch-Oven

Unbaked dough pieces

Rising period

Dutch Oven in Fire

Fire too hot

Freshly baked rolls

Home-made Hungarian Lecsó

ingredients:

  • sunflower oil
  • 1 to 2 onions
  • white Hungarian bell pepper (one bell pepper per person)
  • tomatoes (one per person)
  • a small tin of tomatoe paste
  • water
  • Hungarian Salami (according to taste)
  • salt, pepper, bell pepper powder (sweet) (according to taste)

Fry the onions in the sunflower oil until they are brown and then add the bell pepper. Let it fry for some time and stir from time to time. When the bell pepper starts to get brown add the tomatoes and let the vegetables simmer for some minutes. Add tomatoe paste, some water, salt, pepper and bell pepper powder and then the sliced Hungarian Salami. Let the Leczo simmer for about half an hour with the lid open until it's ready to be served.

Leczo with roll

Slow-Travelling Westwards

Long Abandoned Horse-Cart, Hungary

On Sunday our Swiss friends went back home again, so we're travelling alone now (both, travelling in a group and alone has its good and bad aspects, of course!) ... Actually, as you are constantly meeting new people while traveling, you're never alone if you don't want to be.

Unfortunately, due to a nasty virus that hit the four of us, we did not go to Clopotiva (south of Hateg in Romania) and did not find Jacob the American. Fellow travellers told us that in Clopotiva, you can ask for Jacob who is planning to set up a campsite and helps travelers to find a nice spot to stay for one or two nights on a mountain meadow or so.  So, if by any chance you go there, ask for Jacob (maybe his campsite will have been opened by then) and send us an email with your story.

The Route: As we enjoyed Hungary pretty much when travelling to Romania, we wanted to spend some more time there as well, so, on the 4th August, we went westwards to the small Hungarian city of Csengrad. As we needed a proper laundry machine and hot showers (due to "Montezuma's Revenge"), we did not stay at the campsite there, but drove another 50 km or so to Kiskunmajsa where a nice Dutch couple own a small campsite ("Ons Dorpke", we'll soon update the accomodation and camping section). Yesterday evening the landlady invited all the guests to a dinner of Dutch Fries (just because there are so many children on the campsite, she decided that it was time for a children's party). Tomorrow, we're going to leave this wonderful place and travel through the Puszta backroads ...

People of Hungarian, Belgian, Dutch and German origin feasting together on "Nederlandse Fritjes" at the campsite "Ons Dorpke", Kiskunmajsa, Hungary

Our camp at "Ons Dorpke", Kiskunmajsa, Hungary ... still recovering from "Montezuma's Revenge"

Some Thoughts on Travelling

Slow travel sometimes can be difficult to reach when you want to go to a country as far away from your homecountry as it is the case with Romania or Hungary and Germany. To have some time in your "final destination", you have to rush through some countries that might also be interesting. This can be difficult, especially if you have only two to three weeks to travel or when travelling with children (in our case, though, they are really resilient).

What's interesting in foreign contries?  Some people complain about spending too much time "on the road". This doesn't mean that you are covering large distances while on the road ... in some countries, such as Romania, the road conditions on backcountry roads simply don't enable people to travel fast and that's why sometimes it'll take a lot of time behind the wheel. Still, while driving, you can see and experience a lot: give the villagers a wave, stop for asking the way and have a small chat about the weather, stop at a roadside vendor and buy some mushrooms or a melon, ... So many things that can be much more interesting than touristy sights just lie next to the backroads. What's more: these experiences are your own personal ones, the touristy sights are interpreted and you have to share them with other tourists. Experiencing a country only works when trying to mingle with the locals.

This leads me to Shopping! We try to buy local produce in small local shops instead of going to big (often Western-European) supermarkets or other international companies. Of course, if you've got the Vegimite, Marmite, Peanut Butter, Schwarzbrot, Lemon Curd munchies, it's fine to go there and buy the stuff you miss so dearly. In most other cases, local shops will be more interesting because people talk to you and are interested in you and not only in your shopping habits. Also, they might be considerably cheaper, have really fresh local fruits and vegetables and, what's the most important thing to us: the money you spend will go directly to the "small", local people and not filling the pockets of businessmen and "entrepreneurs" from western Europe or The States. We have nothing against these guys personally, but simply like to leave our money in the country we visit! Often, we buy things we don't have a clue about what they are, just because! Also, locals are the best "guidebooks" existing! Guidebooks can be a great help sometimes and can help in getting a good overview over a country, but you'll have to realize that all that "secret information" they provide is a "secret" shared between you and all the readers of that special guidebook!

Campsites: Most often you will not find a European standard campsite. For us teaching our children life skills, it is important to show them that other people are not able to enjoy the standards we enjoy at home ... this makes one humble! Anway, don't rush through the country trying to find "the best campsite" ... sometimes the most interesting encounters happen at exactly the "worst campsites" imaginable!

A Romanian Affair

Often the unexpected happens ... Romania’s reputation from the eyes of the standard German really is a negative one: car theft, rabied wild dogs, gypsies, street prostitution, children gangs et cetera ... All this certainly happens in Romania – just as in Germany, the USA or elsewhere! Still, we really fell in love with Romania! Why? Well, here are some of our impressions so far:

Village Road, Cisnadioara/Micheldorf, Romania

Carpathian Landscape, Romania

When was the last time that ...

... somebody, well, nearly everybody greeted you when you passed them by or happily waved back when you waved at them even though you never met before?

... you were invited to 8 cl shots of home distilled whatever-fruit-schnapps by a complete stranger just after arriving at a "campsite" (over 50° proof, after hours of driving, in the direct sun with over 30 °C)? Soooo tasty and relaxing!

... your children were given cookies, crisps and sweets just because people think they are cute? Romanians love children!

... your children were kissed by other children just passing by.

... people stopped on the road for a small talk about travelling, children, Germany, Romania?

... people were hospitable beyond any expectation even though they are terribly poor?

A long time ago? Never happened at all? Then hit the road and go to Romania! Forget its reputation in the western world, forget negativeness and fear and open up to Romania’s people! Far more important than all sights a country can provide - even though they have a lot of them here in Romania - are its people(s)!

Other nomadic impressions:

Impressive churches of all ages, made of wood, stone, with silver or golden roofs.

Old people with thousands of stories deeply engraved into their withered faces sitting next to the road.

Fairytale impressions of an age long ago. People with scythes, complete families travelling on horse-drawn carts, following old craftsmanship, the beautiful young girl selling fruit along the roadside. Please don't get us wrong here ... we know that all this means life-long hard work and is not romantic at all. But they have something that seems to be getting lost (or sadly is lost at all) in many western countries: family and community sense, a deep and friendly willingness to help, and a deep connection to land, weather and people that is worth far more than material wealth!

Hundreds of dogs barking the night away.

People working on the fields living in plastic shacks.

Roads with potholes the size a 4wd can get lost in (the roads reminded me of Kingsley Holgate's essay on the African Pothole). Still, wherever you look, there are a lot of roadworks going on.

People selling fruit and vegetables, mushrooms and any kind of goods alongside the roads (we even saw people selling home-distilleries).

Everybody is consequently not following any traffic rules.

As you can see, Romania is a country of many contrasts! We hope that the spirit of Romania doesn't get lost in the development process in the following years.

The Route from Poland to Cisnadioara/Micheldorf in Romania:

From Niedzika in Poland we went to Slovakia where on the first "campsite" near Veláty (it was an outdoor swimming pool, actually) we were invited to a party of the local hunters. They sang the night away with an old man playing the harmonica and a young man playing the guitar. After falling asleep to the singing and a short but very relaxed night we went on our way East taking small country lanes and an "African style" ferry (connecting Zemlénagárd and Tuzsér) through Hungary. Hungary for us is the country of storks. We lost count of them. In every village, you find at least three nests with three to five (!) storks in each of them ... hundreds, thousands alltogether! Here the first horse-drawn carts appeared in the regular traffic. Hibiscus bushes line the roads. People here are dressed the way people were dressed in Germany about 40 to 60 years ago (apron dress and headscarf; I remember my old great grandma wearing the same clothes about 35 years ago).

At the Hungarian-Romanian border near Satu Mare (RO) we did not feel comfortable at first (people "aggressively" begging next to a money exchange office), but going north, travelling through the small villages in the Carpathian mountains (Baia Mare, Desesti, Borsa, Bicaz, Gheorgheni/Niklasmarkt) meeting people on the streets, asking for the way and being guided to the next campsite, changed this impression to the positive.

From there we went to Cisnadioara/Micheldorf near Sibiu/Hermannstadt in Transsylvania/Siebenbürgen. Here, until their eviction after the second world war and another wave of emigration to Germany after 1989 a lot of Germans lived peacefully alongside Romanians. The German culture is still kept alive here and many people address you in German when they meet you on the streets.

Storks in Hungary

African-Style Ferry in Hungary (Photo by Leon Degonda)

Village Impressions, Cisnadioara/Micheldorf, Romania

3 Nomad Girls at a Well

Chocolate Bananas - The Girls' Favourite Desert Straight from the Campfire

 

Village Impressions, Cisnadioara/Micheldorf, Romania

The plan for the next few days:

We leave tomorrow and try to find "Jacob the American". Wait and see!