I love the randomness of travel. And I love being able to laugh away a far-from-perfect situation.
I finally tore myself away from the Humic household and caught a stuffy bus to Vrsac, a town near the Serbian border with Romania. From there I caught a train (one of only two a day) across the border to Timisoara. This roundabout journey seems to be the only way to get into Romania so I was prepared for a long trip, but this turned into something else all together.
I arrived in Timisoara around 9pm (Romania is an hour ahead of Serbia and South Africa) and hot tailed it into the city centre to find wifi and check if my cs host could find me. Turns out he was away for business. So I had no bed for the night. No problem I thought, I’ll just find a hostel in town. Ha! All the places I found online didn’t seem to exist in real life and after a few hours of walking around, my backpack getting heavier and the night getting longer, I felt a little desperate.
I then bumped into an Italian guy who was killing time before his 2am bus to Belgrade. We joined forces and did some sightseeing by night, some YouTube watching and much talking. I joined him at the petrol station to wait for his mini bus and the hours continued to pass. By 3am he started to resign himself to the fact that the bus wasn’t coming. By 3:30am he stopped swearing. By 4am he bought a bottle of wine and we passed the night very happily, at the petrol station, in the dark, with an okay bottle of local wine.
The train I wanted to catch was just before 6am and we made our way to the station with enough time to spare. Only to find I had gotten the time wrong and the train had already gone! After all night waiting for the train I managed to miss it! But what could I do besides laugh and wait another three hours. Edwardo was in time and left me with a slurry goodbye.
Lesson learnt: check the train schedule carefully. And a bad situation can turn into a great story when you have someone to share it with, and remember to keep smiling!