chapter 16 croatian unofficial pre- hitchgathering

Walking from the park in Trieste where we had camped towards the highway directionn Rijeka, we came across a supermarket and of course we went to check out the dumpsters. One of the employees saw us and kindly gave us all the good stuff he was forced to throw away, wishing us a nice day. We ate the best watermelon, perfect for breakfast on a hot day. Then another employee or the owner came out and started insulting us, threatening us with the police and almost attacking us physically for eating watermelon on his parking. We packed our stuff, wished the guy a nice day and went off.

From Trieste we hitchhiked to Croatia. It was also my first time in this country. It started with a funny story, I lost the tent I had borrowed from a friend for these travels. We were three hitchhikers in a car, a guy driving like crazy, annoyed because of a small traffic jam and therefore took detours on small curvy roads. I had the tent attached to the backpack in the boot of the car and when we crossed the border and they asked for passports, I reached back to look for my passpoSAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESrt which was somewhere deep down in my bag, I had forgotten there’s still countries in Europe where you need it. So I took out the tent, reached in as far as I could with my arm, quick, quick, as we were approaching the border station.  Then someone told me “with your ID it’ s fine” and I grabbed my purse and showed it. We passed the border, and just before the driver accelerated my friends decided we should get off and hitch a different car, so we all jumped out. In that hurry I didn’t notice that the tent was still lying in the back of that car until it had gone off on the highway, the driver probably noticed only when unpacking the things he had loaded.. At that moment I thought it was the best to see the positive part: I had to carry two kilograms less!SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

New country means a new language! Unlike Italy here I couldn’t communicate at all. If people didn’t speak English, German or Italian, it was just “dobra, dobra” and that was pretty much it. Most were family cars, packed to the top with small kids and what they might need on their vacations, many of them coming from Germany, Switzerland or Netherlands. We waited more than average due to this vacation traffic. But we got rides, thanks to the swiss of us and his charm a swiss family drove us all the last part.

We had agreed to meet the rest of the Chiavenna hitchhiking group at a “secret bay”, two of them had discovered last year, as Kupari was too far to reach it on one day. The landscape was very beautiful, we followed the roads along the coast, looking on all the long islands that parallel to the coastline and look like moonscapes, I don’t know why, but theres no vegetation on the side you can see, it’s just turquoise blue water and the islands of dry red rocks. And on the mainland too, little vegetation, few trees, all of them fig trees. Tourism business is on the rise, big money to be made, therefore there are millions of camping places and wild camping is made illegal with the police going for patrols pretty strictly. We made sure we were not to be seen with tents from the road.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESThe tiny secret hidden little bay, was not so secret, there were already people there, enjoying the transparent water and the hot sun. But they left when a storm came up, out of the blue it started storming and raining. We didn’t even have time to run for shelter and got all wet, but group laughing and hugs and ukulele made up for it. As soon as it started it stopped, the clouds disappeared, the serene evening sun came out and we went to the village for watermelon. A little later we sat under the treSAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESe, amazed by the rise of the hide which made the bay even smaller and more private. We cooked dinner and sat down to eat when from behind the hill another big storm came over, with those big raindrops they only have at the seaside. That storm made everything wet even quicker as we could put up the tents and take care not to be blown away by the wind. But it was not cold and the next morning we had a great swim naked, while the sun dried everything. We split again in different teams and started hitchhiking further southSAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES.

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