Ruth: The Hungarian plains are the land of the bicycle. Not only is the area flat and well suited to riding, but everybody rides one. The more I looked around the small town we have been passing through the more I realized that the majority of homes do not have cars in their driveways. Oh of course there are cars on the road ranging from posh BMWs and Audis to rusty Ladas and even some Trabants, but most of the people are on their bicycles. Whenever a critical mass of cyclist exists, communities build bike paths. The last few days whenever the roads have felt like they are getting busy with trucks a bicycle path appears linking towns that are several kilometres apart. In the towns, there is always a well maintained bike trail crowded with ladies heading off to the store for their morning shopping.
In my books this is civilization! Today as we rode towards the Romanian border our entire trip was on a separated bike lane. As we approached customs with a highway choked with trucks queuing to cross the border we smoothly sailed through in our own lane. Once in Romania the lane continued all the way to our destination of Oradea.