28 Mar Dubrovnik
It has been raining for the last two days in Mostar and it did not look like it was going to stop anytime soon. However, we had to get going eventually. So what are we to do, but cycle in the nasty wet weather. Actually, it rained so much and so hard at times, that we did not even try to take any pictures on our way out of Bosnia and into Dubrovnik. After two days of getting poured on and one night of wet, cold wild camping, we finally made it into Dubrovnik, where we planned on taking a down day to sight see the old town.
About 90 km out from Dubrovnik, we started to spot signs that were advertising a campground in town. We saw the signs about every 20 km and figured a campground that invests in all this advertisement and is located in the middle of a touristy town, would be open all year long. However, once we made it into town, the signage was pretty much non-existent and it was quite difficult to find the campground. After riding up and down several steep hills in town we finally found it. To our frustration it had a big sign in the window: “CLOSED”
Closed for what?? For the day, for the weekend, for the season? Who knows!!
Unfortunately, there was nobody to ask. All we could see were another couple people in camper vans who were also looking for a place to camp for the night and after waiting around for a few minutes decided to move on as well.
Frustrated and tired, we decided to go on a hunt for an alternative place to stay. Since it was starting to rain on us again and it was already dark, we opted to find a room in town, instead of riding to another campground about 10 km out of town. ( Who knows whether that was actually open?!)
Eventually, we found a sign for a room, we rang the bell and a very nice, funny, and welcoming lady opened the door for us. She helped us get situated, got us a glass of Grappa and sweet liqueur to warm up, and gave us a map and some info on town. Luckily, the room also had a small kitchenette, so we could just cook a quick meal out of whatever we had in our panniers and didn’t have to go back out in the rain to get a bite to eat.
The weather was not getting any better the next day, but we were determined to check out the old city of Dubrovnik anyway…heck, isn’t that what rain gear is for?!
We wandered along the inside of the city walls and the outside of the walls. Got splashed on with rainwater from above and seawater from below. Climbed countless stairs and walked many little alleyways and rewarded ourselves with a cup of coffee and a round of people-watching before heading back to our dry room.
As we packed up our bikes the next day, our nice host came by. With a huge smile on her face she asked Ron for his wife and told him “I have a present for her”.
Once she saw me, she pulled out a pair of riding shorts and a reflective vest from behind her back, smiled at me and said:”they should be your size”. To my surprise, she just lifted me right off the ground, gave me a huge hug, and a kiss on the cheek. She was sincerely happy for us to be on our journey and wished us a farewell before taking off.
The people we meet along our travels never seem to stop to amaze us!
As we climbed out of town the sun started to peek through the clouds and before we knew it, it was getting so hot that for the first time this year, we actually had to get out the suntan lotion and our sun hats to continue our ride down the coast to Montenegro.