At the beginning of September I had to take my last exams of the postgraduate, and as it was just a couple of subjects, I didn’t want to leave them for the return. As I study at a distance university, I can take the exams in many countries (but not Croatia), so I decided to go Berlin, in Germany.
I went there first because I didn’t want to return home and then become lazy to return and second (and most important), because my girlfriend lives there. Well, the exams and papers went fine, but I won’t get the grades till mid-October, so I will still be a bit nervous till then.
Berlin was nice, but I didn’t have that much time to visit, as I had to study. What I did was enjoy food. Berlin is like vegan paradise! So many places with only vegan food! I’m not used to so much variety, it was fantastic!
In the meantime Goiznabar and Javi where enjoying a small break with some friends from Bilbao that happened to be on vacation in Croatia. They were supposed to stay with Diego and Idoia for 5 days, and then keep going south next to the Mediterranean Sea, towards Dobrovnic, where I would meet them.
Of course things never go as planned and on the day they left … Goiznabar’s knee failed again! This time they didn’t think twice and called the insurance to get him checked. It was not so easy, but at the end two doctors saw him. And how it usually happens they told him two different things, but at least one in common: that he needed to rest.
After 4 days in Berlin and a bit more than a week in Hamburg I knew I had to return to meet the rest of the Biziklautak, who had been stuck in Zagreb all this time. It was not so easy to leave everything again (it felt like starting again), but at the same time I wanted to keep cycling. So after 14 hours on a train I arrived to the Croatian capital.
If I was already getting used to “normal” life, it was nothing to Goiznabar and Javi. They seemed to have been living in the city for months, and that they didn’t remember how to ride a bicycle. But everything changed when I arrived with new panniers and equipment for Goiznabar. Now they were ready to leave and Goiznabar’s knee was feeling better.
We still stayed 3 more days there, pushing Helena´s and Ana´s hospitality to the limits. Almost two weeks sleeping at Ana’s place! Thank you so much! You really made us feel great in Zagreb.
Just like at the beginning of the trip, and actually with the same feeling, it took us hours to get ready, so we left Zagreb way past noon. And as summer is almost over, the days are also shorter, so after just 2 hours cycling we had to pitch our tents in a forest close to the road.
The following day was perfect for cycling, the best weather possible. We crossed Karlovac, but soon after … guess what? … Goiznabar said: “I start feeling my knee, let’s stop”. Right in that second we crossed an abandoned house. We checked it and after some discussion, we chose to sleep there, even if it didn’t convince us completely, as we never slept in such a place before.
We were not feeling completely safe, so Goiznabar built a barricade on the stairs. And staying there turned out to be great, especially because it rained all night. As it was still raining when we woke up we decided to spend another night there. It was nice, really cold, but nice. We made our home out of that house. I think we will miss it sooner or later.
On the road again Goiznabar was not feeling 100%. He didn’t have pain, but he was also not comfortable with his leg, so he could not enjoy. After some talking over a quite expensive coffee close to Plivitse, Goiznabar decided to take a bus to Zadar, where our next host was waiting for us.
I really hope Goiznabar’s knee recovers and we can continue, but as he rested for 10 days and didn’t get better … In Zadar he will be checked by a doctor again, till then nothing can be decided. Even if we have to tie a rope around his bike and pull him, Biziklautak will go around the world!