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A Camping Lesson in Romania's Mountains

By 2007 I had seen most of Romania, and since then I set my face towards other countries too. Close to 20 by now. I've been away for days, weeks, months and even years, with my family, friends, colleagues, complete strangers or on my own. But in none of my travels have I been in such a "messy" situation as I was in 2010 in my home country, when, together with three friends, decided to camp for a night in the heart of Fagaras Mountains.
The adventure of my life started as a simple drive on Transfagarasan, one of Romania's most beautiful high altitude roads. As the sun was setting, we started to look for camping sites by the side of the road. As all of them were full, we decided to push our luck and set our tent on the bank of a small mountain river. Comfortably arranged, we proceeded to the trip's fun part, which involved barbecuing and a certain amount of Romanian plum brandy called tuica. A few drops of rain drove us inside the tent, and as we became more and more good-humoured, the rain also became increasingly wild, turning into a real storm.
But what can four people do during a stormy night, inside a tent, with barely any batteries left in their flashlights? I hope you placed your bet on sleeping, because that's exactly what we did. We snuggled in our air beds, the boys said some risky jokes and we all laughed, but soon the sound of water made us all very, very sleepy and silence fell between us. Well, maybe silence is not a good word to describe that sound, as it was more like a murmur. A murmur of water. Somewhere close. Strangely close.
- Guuuuuys, give me some light here!, one of the boys said.
And there it was, the river rapidly flowing right through the middle of our tent. We quickly jumped out of bed and evacuated all the important things from the tent, dragging them through the flood, the rain and mud, up the hill where we had left our car. Dead scared and soaking wet, we slept (not much, though) in the car until morning, when the rain stopped and the sun came out. The damage evaluation included:
- all things that we brought from the tent were wet and dirty;
- all things inside the car became wet and dirty from the things we brought from the tent;
- 4 out of 10 tent nails missing, together with a watermelon, some juice bottles, one of my shoes (luckily I had brought some slippers with me) and probably some things that we didn't even realize were gone.
We washed and cleaned some of the things that could be saved, threw away what was irretrievable, and carefully packed the rest for our trip back home. We thanked God for everybody being safe and sound. Mountain camping lesson learned!
Transfagarasan Road Shoeless after the "event" Fagaras Mountains
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Alexandra - Daniela Ilie

Alexandra - Daniela Ilie

Currently located in:
Craiova, Romania.
Twitter: @danailie2004
About me in 140 characters or less

"Restless traveller. Funny & smart. Internetoholic. "More than perfect" is not a grammatical tense, but a purpose in life."

A bit more about Alexandra - Daniela:

"I draw the line at eating... Nothing, I'll try anything once"

"My most essential travel phrase is... Are you local?"

"My most memorable souvenir is... something that I bought in Barcelona and reminds me of childhood. It looks like a toy camera and when you look through the viewfinder into a source of light and push a button, old pictures of tourist attractions in Barcelona come to sight. "

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