One night in Croatia
The road on the other side of the border was also very quiet. Once in a while a car passed by and the road conditions were perfect. I passed one corn field after another. This rural area reminded me on the areas North Friesland and Dithmarschen in my home state in Germany. I pedaled through some smaller villages and still there were not many cars and I even barely saw people. It was just a good and relaxing ride.
As I was pedaling, I watched the sun slowly going down behind the corn fields. A few kilometers outside of Osijek I got off the road to find a camp spot for the night. I took a small track across the fields, went through a couple of puddles until I found a good spot behind a few trees and bushes a bit aside of the small track. I thought: Here I am invisible from the rest of the world. It didn't rain for many days and there were also only a few clouds in the sky so I only put up the mosquito net of my tent. After sunset I crawled into my tent and read for a while. I heard and saw a few rabbits running nearby my tent. Later I heard some gun shots in far distance. Nothing unusual in a rural area. Most likely someone hunting for some game. Later I watched the stars and was about to fall asleep.
Light pointed in my direction. A car came down the track. I laid down flat on my stomach. The closer the car came into my direction the more I was wondered if the driver can see my tent. Then it stopped. Maybe 10-12 meters away from me. I was still lying flat on my stomach and observed the situation. I was really nervous about what would happen next. What shall I do if it's the person with the gun who I heard earlier? What shall I say? No clue! I guess I just have to improvise. Time went really slow now. Please don't get out of your car! Please don't get out of your car!
The driver slowly kept driving after a minute or two - veeery long one or two minutes. The car slowly passed me and my tent. Only the few trees and bushes separated us. Hopefully the driver isn't not going to stop again! He didn't. Such a relief! I wonder if he actually saw me!?
I cycled through Osijek the next morning and Vukovar later the next day. In the evening I arrived the Croatian - Serbian border at Backa Palanka. The border control lady on the Serbian side was very amused to see the little toy turtle on top of my handle bar bag and waved me through.
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