Via Transilvanica

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This post is about a 19km walk from Drobeta-Turnu Severin to Balotești. I fix a tire in John’s bike shop La Pedale, and I wait out some rain.

In the morning I walked through Drobeta and straight to a bike shop called La Pedale. I had been there before a few days earlier to fix a tire. Now I was back with the Caboose, and I had another tire to be fixed.

la pedale

John, the owner, was very helpful. He had cycling in his blood, just like Rajko from Niš and Bojan from Negotin. And so he had opened a shop and a repair garage. He had a guest book, thick with entries written by long-distance cyclists whom he had helped out. They all loved him. I wrote my name in the guest book, and I put in one of the stickers that Bojan had made for me.

the rain

The road out of town was busy with trucks and cars. There was hardly a shoulder to walk on, and everyone went very fast. It was like a window into what could have been, had I decided to take one of the main roads through the mountains.

Still, I was unsure if I had made the right decision. I was going to follow the new Via Transilvanica hiking trail for a while, then take a mountain road. The road through the mountains looked hard and lonely.

I waited out a rain cloud at a roadside shop. It usually never worked out like this. Most of the times I would get surprised by rain on the road, and then, once I was wet through and through, I would find shelter somewhere. And then the rain would stop. Today I hardly got wet at all, my timing was so perfect.

Maybe this was a good omen?

Judas Priest shirts

I walked on a quiet country road after this. It looked a lot like Serbia, only there were more crosses, and some of the houses had strange little protrusions in their roofs.

There was a guesthouse designated by the Via Transilvanica. Mircea, the owner, had a liking for metal and outdoor cooking. We ate spinach with polenta, and we listened to Sepultura under the trees in his garden.


walk from Drobeta-Turnu Severin to Balotești

  • Benjamin K.

    Fingers crossed the trails work out well! And that future main-road-walkings are brief.
    Couldn’t John put an electric motor on the caboose? And a brake…
    Or hire someone to bring her to the other side of the mountains – or even better: hire porters like Reinhold Messner!


  • natalie

    I hope the mountain road won’t be too hard & lonely – maybe with the nice weather there will be lots of hikers? Although I guess they would stick to the trail. You got this Chris! Best of luck.


  • Jared

    Shaorma Magic sounds good. Did you get a taste?
    One thing your blog has clearly shown, is there are kind and generous people all over the world.


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