Monday, 20 September 2010
Wednesday 15 September. Split-Herceg Novi. 9 hours. 8 cars.
Said goodbye to lovely host Igor, who hosted me two nights in Split. Get a bus to my hh spot. First car stops. Young dude.Waiter. Late twenties. Drops me off in Omis. Cute little town. He says it’s the best town along the coast. It has a river, beach, sea, mountains. And him. He really wants me to stay and says he has room for me in his place. Even though tempted, cause Omis really is gorgeous. I thank him for the offer. I stop car number two. Old man. We don’t speak much. Fine with me. Gives me more time to appreciate the beautiful scenery outside my window. He drops me of in Makarska. 3rd car (actually mini van) stops. Hippie dude. He says he will drop me off at a better hh spot. He does. There are more people hitching at this spot. I decide to hh with this polish couple. We stop car number 4. Old dude. Creepy type, my instincts tell me. As soon as the polish couple gets off (they were only going 10 kms), my instincts prove me right. But before he gets a chance to get touchy feely, I grab my phone and pretend to talk. For the next half hour. He manages to keep his hands to himself. I get off. Still 80 kms to Dubrovnik. Car 5 stops. He brings me some 20 kms further. Decent dude who spoke excellent English. Drops me off and I stop car 6. British dude. From Bournemouth. Thirties. On a cross country trip. Promoting his scuba diving social network. On a quest to personally visit all diving centers in South East Europe to get his site in the spotlights. Also does some charity work. Going to Africa to raise money for his charities back in Britain. Totally intriguing dude. Too bad he can only take me 20 kms further. He drops me off at a gas station. And at this point it’s pretty late in the afternoon. And not a lot of cars going down this road... I'm starting to get a little bit worried. I'm gonna need some luck to make it to Crna Gora. I stick my thumb out and first car stops. With a license plate from France. Old man. Says he doesn’t know where he is going. Hmm…doesn’t sound like someone I want to be traveling with at this point. But then he says he’s going to Podgorika or something. I’m like, Podgorica?! Really?! I’m headed for Crna Gora! And he says jump in, which I do of course. He is from Nice. A writer. And biology and geography teacher. Taking a 6 month sabbatical to travel through South East Europe and Afrika. And writing a book in the process. Very interesting man. He drops me off in Herceg Novi. But actually I need to be in Ulcinj that evening to meet my next host. It’s 19.30. And starting to get dark. I don’t want to hitch when it’s night. I hitch a short ride to the bus station. Turns out the last bus to Ulcinj had already left and the next one is the next day. I ask for a bus to Beograd. There’s one in half an hour. I’m like, what do I do now? Pay for a room and go to Ulcinj the next day or go home tonight? Then all these old ladies approach me, asking me if I need a room. I’m like, I don’t know if I can trust these people. I say I don’t have more than 5 Euros on me. At first they say no, but then one says yes. Is she for real? For all I know, she might lure me in some trap or something. But I do want to see Ulcinj and I decide to check one of the rooms out. Not very luxurious, but what do you expect for 5 Euros/night. I take the room. It has two doors. But no locks. Just to be sure, I block the doors and windows with the extra furniture standing around the room. I go to bed with my phone in one hand and pepper spray in the other.