Home > Europe, Hungary, Romania > Budapest – Timişoara (Temesvár), The beginning

Budapest – Timişoara (Temesvár), The beginning

June 16th, 2011

The departure

The last three days before our departure was extremely busy for us, we had to organize our visa to Pakistan, got the second medication for colera and all three days we were running from shop to shop, one sponsor to another so we could have all our necessary equipment for the journey. In the evenings we stayed up late organizing, packing our stuff, edited our website. Miracolously we got all the critical things done, only a few less important were left out, but we’re going to try to catch up with these. On Saturday, 11th June we woke up later than planned, after sleeping 1-1.5 hours, because I thought the meeting at Hősök tere was at 9am, so I let us have a nap till 6:35am. For breakfast my newly become mother-in-law (Aunt Kati – The World’s Best Mother-in-law) made us a slice of bread each, but none of us were able to have more than a bite. We had searious excitement. The previous night we tried to pack up our 4 bags, so we were ready to go in just over an hour. By this time my parents had arrived with my brother and Aunt Jutka. We made some photos in front of Zita’s house, then we departed on our recumbents. They were rolling surprisingly smoothly under the heavy load.At the Hősök tere there was a 40-50 people crowd waiting for us, there were guys among them who we didn’t even expect. Thank you all who came to our farewell, we had a very good time, it was a really memorable departure.
We rode to Pestszentlőrinc in a very comfortable pace, took about an hour or so. We found Oszi’s bike service open at the corner of Bókay street and Petőfi street, so we could make a little adjustments on Dani’s breaks and change a used rachet on Tihamér’s bike. Thank you Oszkár for your help! While the bikes were in the service the rest of the gang had a picnic in Madarász street. By then Zita and I were very hungry, so the lard bread and the lemonade given by my parents tasted great. I quickly ran into my room to say goodbye and I picked some other bits up too I left out in the rush. It was very difficult to leave home. We cycled across the little woods called Péter-halom straight to Gyál leaving the city behind us. Our group had about 15-20 members at that point.

The first stop was at Ócsa where we did some shopping, had a coffee then we were off towards Inárcs. This lasted about 1.5-2 hours, because the people’s fitness level wasn’t the same in our company, but should this be our biggest problem.

Benő’s Újhartyán

In Újhartyán we stopped at the Trianon memorial craved by Benő Fajth. Here an elderly lady approached and asked about us. It appeared she knows Benő well – not surprising in a village -, and follows his journey on the website I created, and she even heard about us too. We were pleased to hear this and we had a good chat with the lady. Since then we are trying to arrange a meeting with Benő, who left for his annual tour a few weeks ago and just turned back at Istanbul to return home. If we’re lucky we may meet him in Sofia.
There was not much to go after Újhartyán. Those who had road bikes took the longer route on asphalt to Pusztavacs, the rest of us moved to the north side of the highway where we took the dirt roads to the center of Hungary. Actually, our first stop was the local restaurant for an hour. We had a beer and a great chat – it’s great to have the entire team together… There were a few very old friends with us and cyclists who haven’t met before.

At the center of Hungary

After finishing our beers we rolled over to the memorial where we set up out camp. We had about 15 people with us there. We had a bonfire and then slowly everyone went to sleep in their tents.
When we woke up in the morning there was Dúd in the front compartment of our tent. We spent our first night of our honeymoon in a tent where Ádám sneaked in and he did it so quietly we only noticed him during the night.

The second day

On the second day our first stop was Örkény where my father joined us and we said bye to Tihamér, who took a train home. He gave us a present, a bottle of Unicum, that we have opened up already. The next funny story happened at Tatárszentgyörgy. Four of us surged ahead and at one of the crossing a woman asked for help, asking if we have a pump. We said we have two each and we were pumping her flat tyres. While we were on it she asked how we got there – We’re on a honeymoon, I answered. :) She was stunned and asked – Guys, on a honeymoon, how? Around this time Zita arrived and that was it for her. – One woman with so many guys? Zita said: Well, you have to enjoy your life…

10 years old Fanni

To Kecskemét the road was a long straight so the group broke up again but this time we stayed in the chasing pack. Zita, my dad, Dani, Gyula and Fanni. Latter two fanatics are father and his 10 years old daughter. Yes, Fanni is 10, and she cycled the entire 255kms from Budapest to Szeged! She attached her teddybear to the other side of her bike each day so he could have a nice the view too. Sometimes we pushed her bicycle so we could catch up with the rest of the group, we also did that for fun too. This was very simple doing it from our recumbents as her rear bike rack was at our shoulder. It was so great to help Fanni , we could talk or just observe her while she was experiencing the birds along the road, the storks on the top of the poles with her pure childly joy. Gyula and Fanni planning to do the Budapest – London – Budapest distance together. You can travel to the Olympic Games like this as well! We wish you a lot of experiences and persistence! Sometimes we had to wait a bit for them but I have to say they lifted the spirits high up at this stage of the trip, and I think others say the same too, so thank you for coming with us to Szeged! Fanni weighs 29kg, I lifted her up, then her bike too, the bike was heavier. To compare myself with her, I’m 78kg and my bike is around 50kg – together with the baggages of course. If we find the trip hard with all these weights, we’ll think of little Fanni as an encouragement.

Our fame has caught up with us – and even blocks the wind for us

Let’s not rush ahead yet, we are only at Kecskemét. The first group had finished lunch by the time we arrived. We grabbed our sandwiches too and as discussed earlier everyone scattered a bit. Some chilled out on a bench, some had ice cream and wandered in the town center, taking some photos. I wasn’t at the scene, but Dani told that a couple stopped at our recmbents and the man started to tell his wife with enthusiasm – „Look Dear, these are the kind of bikes that newlywed couple take on their trip around the world!” – Dani answered, that these are the two bikes going around the world and their owners are 20 meters away eating ice cream. He sold them 5 sticks of vanilla straight away too. You have to know about Dani, that he’ll come with us till Istambul and he has a smaller budget that we have. However he has a spice shop, and lots of sticks of vanilla that he tries to sell along the road to cover his expenses, it’s possible he will return home on a bike too. So far the vanilla business is going ok, he sold enough vanilla almost every day to cover the daily food.
At the townborder of Kecskemét we said good bye to my father, then carried on towards Szentkirály and Lakitelek. As soon as we left the town, Dani had some problems. It happened, that he loaded his rear bags a few beers and some food, but this lowered the bike and the tyre just touched the lamp at the bottom of the rack – he already shortened his rear mudguard at Kecskemét. We tried to fix the problem, but we succeded after half an hour. After this break we stepped up the pace a bit, also thanks to the lad with a mountain bike who just had to do his training that way. He heard about the 360°bringa and he was so delighted for us and gladly made the pace for the group, so our average speed hiked up to 30-32km/h till Szentkirály, where our new mate had to leave us behind. From that point I was the leading the pack ahead Dani who was riding about 10cms behind my back. (Dani also rides a recumbent).

Meeting with an old friend

At Lakitelek the gang was waiting for us at the predetermined meeting point. They told us not to stop, so we carried on over the Tisza to Tiszaug, then to Csépa. A little rest would have been nice there, so I got a bit upset. There were many of us, so when we broke off the pack we had to rush back, otherwise we stopped at every bush to do some shopping or feast from a sour cherry tree. This really tested my nerves, although I shouldn’t have been upset because this was expected of the size of group we had.
Thank God this state didn’t last long because when we turned onto the road leading to our accommodation after Csépa, a tiny miracle happened.
We just stayed behind the group to see the sunset when we noticed a man behind us getting out of a white car that was following us for a while. We noticed him earlier and we didn’t know if it’s good or bad. Maybe he wants to surprise us with a half roast pork or maybe he’s a policeman to stop us from setting up a wild camp. Then reality blew our imaginations. The man greeted us like this: „Good evening, I’m looking for Árpád Sziráki!”, what can you answer: „Good evening, it’s me!”. He showed a photograph. It was made in Tromsö, him, Nándi and I was sitting on a bench. Oh my God, how small the world is! It’s István from Tromsö, who chat us in Hungarian beyond the Polar Circle, up north in Norway two years ago. That time he told us he used to be a big cyclist, he even took group of kids for a tour to Rome. It appeared that István is actually Zoltán, and not only he’s a chemist but also a catholic priest at Kecskemét. He read the To Rome with recumbents blog and Zita’s journal from the Camino, so he was up to date regarding us. He knew about this journey too, he read our plan for the first 4 days and found us causing huge surprise on our second day.
He didn’t only come to meet us, but to give us his blessing, and being Whit Sunday he gave Zita a service too. It was fantastic to talk to him, he had great stories and he backe us up in what we’re doing that it’s not a crazy thing, but a brilliant way to discover the world, ourselves and each other. Zoltán made me twice happy as Zita wanted to go to a Sunday service in Kecskemét, but there was none in that time we wre there. Zoltán made up for this loss, so we are very greatful for him.

The tale of the fish soup and the platanus trees in of Szeged

In the evening we made asparagus soup, then after we said bye to Zoltán, we joined the group around the bonfire. That evening our group welcomed a new member, Hunor, who arrived on the previous day from Oradea (Nagyvárad), Romania riding 200kms to the dike of the Tisza. In the morning he told us, once he attended a 280km long MTB race including 5000m elevation. By hearing this we laughed and thought we don’t have to wait for him too long on this tour.
That morning Dúd, Kutya and Berci said farewell, Szeged was their final destination. They have a different touring pace, so they required much patience while accompanying us, but I don’t think they regret joining us at all. For me Ádám’s company was really good on the first two days, he has become a great friend of mine since a chess game at college. We won’t run together on the Hármashatár-hegy for a while, but one thing for sure: we’ll return home one day! Because our friend and family are there. We haven’t written about this yet, cause the farewell from our loved ones, especially our mothers were really difficult. Let’s pedal back to the more joyous waters.

I haven’t spoken about Andor Koller, who accompanied us from Lakitelek to Baks. On the third morning he arrived to our camp with his 8 years old daughter, so still 10 of us crossed the bridge towards Csongrád. There Hanna cycled home and the gang continued on the embankment. We had a few kilometers with heavy concrete tiles, but apart from that we had excellent quality asphalt along the river.
At Baks we took a photo of the group at “main direction signs”, then we headed to the shade of a pub avoiding the hottest time of the day. Ági Bujna and her 2 girlfriends joined us there. They cycled from Szeged to meet us, and accompanied us back to Szeged so we could spend the evening together. Then Ági suddenly had an important job interview, so she couldn’t make it for the evening, but she organized everything thoroughly for us.

We stayed at the Franciscans at the Mátyás tér, where we received a huge portion of fish soup from the courtesy of Péter Makra and the Szélkakas restaurant. Ági’s mum helped us with the dinner that we consumed in a very good spirit in the yard of our accommodation. The age of the members of our company ranged between 10 and 68, and we got on really well during these three days. The night wasn’t over with the dinner, Dova organized a presentation for us under the platanus trees behind the church. He brought a generator, a laptop and a projector on his trailer. The canvas was made of 4 bedsheets and was hung up between the trees, so this way we could see the films about cycling, environment protection and sustainability. It was good to meet András (his nickname: Dova), not only because he had good stories of his European trip, but because we were glad to see someone else who has the same mindset about the environment, its related problems and solutions as we do, and he’s not afraid to spread the word or do something about it. On the other hand he’s good at the cycling side too. It’s good to know there are people like us, hopefully by the time we return there will be more!

Timişoara, 4 Jósika street

On the 4th day at the beginning of the Szeged – Timişoara stage we said good bye from most of our companions, after passing the border only 4 of us were left including Dani and Zéta. Zéta is a big recumbent fan and he was a great tour mate, we were very happy to get to know him personally too on this stage. We were pretty quick on this day, we covered 117kms in a good spirit, we spent most of the time on the road in one single file with a speed between 22 and 25km/h.
At the Timişoara town sign we started to celebrate, then we realized the clock was running 1 hour ahead, therefore we were late from meeting our hosts. After a few texts and phone calls we sorted the situation out of course, and a few minutes later four of us were in Dudi’s first floor apartment, with our recumbents. We had shower, charged our batteries, washed our clothes, browsed the net, had dinner and even the bottle of Unicum was opened, we were up till 1:30am talking in Hungarian and in English.
The fifth day was a rest day, we didn’t even ride 20kms in the town, we saw the town centre and bought spare inner tubes for the bikes. We visited Reni, Zita’s ex-classmate in the Notre Dame order house where we received dinner and we picked lot of mint leaves and other spices for the rest of the trip. It was good to be at Reni’s in the quiet little garden after we spent all day in town. Thank you for the hospitality!
We all liked Timişoara, according to Reni it had changed into a really nice town in the past few years, we saw many tidy parks and the quality of the roads were good too. They started to paint the cycle lanes recently on pavements and the sides of the roads, it’s even funnier than at some places at home. For once the lane isn’t half meter wide, secondly they designed to some places, that’s ridiculous. The worst was a 20cm high kerb with a parking bollard in the middle of the narrow bike lane.
I almost forgot the most important thing, the reason we came to Timişoara: 4 Jósika street – the birth house of my granddad, Lali papa. We found the park next door and another street too that we thought to be the old Jósika street – today it’s Str. Virgil Onitiu. Unfortunately we haven’t had time to research this street before our departure, and Lali papa didn’t remember the house exactly either, but the house we found under number 4 was a pretty old one. The locals said a Hungarian family lives there, but they were not at home, despite our tries no one came out. Zita even sat on my shoulders and we knocked on their windows, but had no luck. We still took a few photos at the main entrance, and we had a fun time finding my grandpa’s birth house. What we could we did, we hope we were at the right spot. If not then tough luck, we tried, we were there, found a nice old house that matches our description, we paid a visit and that’s the main thing.
During the first five days including the rest day we cycled 387,6kms, spent 5418HUF on food and 6975HUF on other stuff. The total is 12393HUF which is under the 5 EUR/person/day. Of course this is tricky because we spent 2x3000HUF topping up our mobiles what we don’t want to repeat every 5 days and we didn’t buy the inner tubes for 5 days either. To compensate this we spent less on food, because we’ve brought loads from home and we got invited in Szeged too. So to finish it up, I hope we can keep this up, so as the daily kilometers.

  1. sanya
    June 16th, 2011 at 05:07 | #1

    Na végre! Ez már igen! Öröm volt olvasni a beírást. Csak így tovább!

  2. Olgi
    June 16th, 2011 at 05:38 | #2

    Jósika utca 3. a pontos cím. Hajrá gyerekek! Rövidebb írások is jöhetnek, csak legyenek!

  3. June 16th, 2011 at 07:47 | #3

    A halászlé mennyei volt!
    Óriási köszönet érte!

  4. HH
    June 16th, 2011 at 07:49 | #4

    Szia Árpi és Zita!
    Csúcsok vagytok továbbra is :) Imádom olvasni a bejegyzéseiteket, nagyon szuper és izgalmas :)
    VIgyázzatok magatokra és élvezzétek a szabadságot!

  5. June 16th, 2011 at 08:04 | #5

    Sajnos nem tudtam ott lenni Pusztavacson, s ezt nagyon bánom!ű
    E helyen szeretném pótolni az elmaradásomat, remélem nem haragusztok meg érte!
    Két kis írásomat szerettem volna személyesen átadni, mint jó kívánság az útra!


    Habár még télikabátban ülök a tornácon,
    És úgy kávézok,
    De már érzem, lehel a tavasz;
    Várom, hogy a felszálló porral a szél,
    Vigyen a szél engem is messzire,
    Ne lássanak sokan sokáig,
    Szippantson az út magába,
    Ne előre, körbe,
    Hol hajtom fejem álomra,
    Nem tudom előre,
    A nap végén, az út végén
    A csillagok fénye hulljon szememre.

    2008. március 23.

    s az előző “versre” írt válaszom:

    Már levetettem a télikabátot,
    Úgy ülök- rövidnadrágban,
    Hogy bízzak a holnapban,
    Hinni kell a mában,
    Két lépést közt tűz a nap,
    És kék az ég, a rét szele fújdogál,
    Állok és veszem a levegőt mélyen,
    Aztán felülök a vaslóra,
    a Nap Kíséri utam, ahogy megyek,
    Rövidnadrág, abban,
    Nem másban írtam versem.

    2008. május 21.

    Vigyázzatok magatokra és hátszelet!!

    Kollár Lajos

  6. Viktor
    June 16th, 2011 at 08:16 | #6

    A Temesvar tabla alatt levo kiegeszito tablat meglatva biztos addig nyomtam volna a kurtot, amig ki nem fogy belole a levego :-D

  7. Zéta
    June 16th, 2011 at 11:23 | #7


    Este nyolcra értem haza, 276 km-t jöttem. Volt egy defektem is, mindjárt indulás után öt perccel, a temesvári járókelők nagy örömére gumit szereltem egy buszmegálló mellett. Egy üvegszilánk szorult a gumi bordázatába, szerintem még előző nap, és szépen átfúrta magát a belsőig.
    Nagyon örülök, hogy sikerült egy napot Veletek tölteni, pontosan olyanok vagytok, amilyennek elképzeltelek Benneteket. További jó utat, Daninak pedig sok útszéli gyümölcsfát kívánok. :)

  8. Monique and Henk
    June 16th, 2011 at 12:07 | #8

    Hello Arpad and Zita,
    We would like to wish you a very nice Honeymoon-around-the-world, healty and happy travels and good luck in your marriage! If you’re in the neighbourhood of Nijeveen, your Gauchos’ hometown: be welcome!! Cheers, Henk and Monique, Nazca recumbents

  9. June 16th, 2011 at 12:26 | #9
  10. June 16th, 2011 at 22:24 | #10

    @Hegyeli Hunor
    Kedves Barataim, nagyon orulok hogy izlett nektek a finom szogedi filezett halaszle puha kenyerrel. Nagyon sajnalom, hogy nem lehettem es nem falatozhattam ott veletek, nem tudtam elozetes szandekom ellenere kikiserni benneteket kerekparral Temesvarig, de sajnos Irorszagba szolitott a munkam. Orulok tovabba annak, hogy kedves Unokaocsem, Juhasz Tibor foszakacs valamint kedves felesege Erika a szogedi Szelkakas Vendeglo es Panzio tulajdonosai valamint alkalmazottaik jovoltabol egyuttesen prezentalhattuk ezt a kis szereny vacsorat Isten es hu szolgaloi, a ferences testverek segitsegevel az osi rendhaz udvaran. Koszonom tovabba Dovalovszki Andris vagyis Dova Baratomnak, aki hozzam hasonloan bejarta kerekparral Europat, a Matyas teri nagy arnyas fak alatti hangulatos szabadteri vetitest, tovabba Bujna Agikanak az egesz fogadasban jatszott karmesteri szerepet.

  11. gerifut
    June 17th, 2011 at 08:31 | #11

    hol van Dani bukosisakja?

  12. HH
    June 17th, 2011 at 09:50 | #12

    Árpi basszus, 2 napja azon gondolkodom, hogy miért látlak ilyen furcsának. GOndoltam levágattad a hajad. Nincs szemüveged. ÉS HEURÉKA!!! ;) Megborotválkoztál :) – 5 év :)

  13. June 17th, 2011 at 11:17 | #13

    Örülök, hogy csupa jót írtok. Vigyázzatok magatokra és legyetek boldogok:)

  14. Horváth János
    June 17th, 2011 at 12:44 | #14

    Szia Zita és Árpi!

    Nagyon örülök,hogy veletek tekerhettem a Hősök terétől a kiszombori határátkelőig.Jó volt találkozni a régi barátokkal és új kerékpárosokkal is megismerkedtem.Szegeden köszönjük a Ferenceseknek az ingyen szállást.Isten áldja meg Őket érte.Köszönjük Makra Péternek a nagyon finom halászlét és természetesen a szakácsnak aki elkészítette.Hiába a szegedi a legjobb! Köszönettel tartozunk Varga Ági anyukájának -Erzsikének- a felszolgálásért,a finom süteményért,az üdítőért és a sörért.
    Zita és Árpi! Isten áldjon benneteket a hosszú úton és kívánom,hogy szerencsésen haza érjetek.

    Sziasztok:Horváth János Makóról

  15. Holluby Andor
    June 17th, 2011 at 18:17 | #15

    Szia Zita és Árpi!

    Nagyon köszönöm a sorsnak, hogy találkozhattam Veletek, és részt vehettem ennek a fantasztikus útnak egy parányi kis szakaszán. Köszönet mindenkinek, aki segített, eligazított, vendégül látott, szállást és áldást adott. Név szerint Varga Áginak, édesanyjának: Erzsikének, Makra Péternek, Koller Andornak, Zoltán atyának. Minden hódolatom a kis Fanninak, aki óriássá nőtt a szemembe. Röviden: jó volt Veletek.

    Holluby Andor

  16. Endre-Julika
    June 17th, 2011 at 19:03 | #16

    Kedves Fiatalok! Jó utat kívánunk és várjuk mi is a híreket, vigyázzatok egymásra. Puszi.

  17. Melinda
    June 18th, 2011 at 13:41 | #17

    Sziasztok! Sok boldogságot és kitartást kívánok nektek! Melinda

  18. Banzig
    June 18th, 2011 at 21:07 | #18

    Jaj! Minden jót és még ilyen jó beszámolókat kívánok!

  19. Stavi Viktor – Jegesmedve – Isbjørn
    June 18th, 2011 at 22:27 | #19

    Árpád és Zita !

    Köszönöm ( én is ) a beszámolót.

    Amikor itthon voltatok,Árpáddal még telefonon beszéltem – éppen autót vezetett a sok rohanás közepette – és kértem tőle valamit.

    A részleteket hamarosan prívát e-mailben elküldöm nektek,és ha lehet akkor ezt a ,,pici” szívességet kérném tőletek,a dolog szépen lassan de aktuállisá kezd vállni.

    Kitartást és sok boldogságot kívánok nektek,vigyázzatok magatokra és írjatok sok beszámolót.

    Takk,og ha det bra !!!

    Stavi Viktor – Jegesmedve – Isbjørn

  20. vasz
    June 20th, 2011 at 16:07 | #20

    Hajrá Fiatalok!
    Ígérem rendszeres olvasótok leszek!

  21. Olgi
    June 20th, 2011 at 19:23 | #21

    Jó háznál kopogtattatok, az volt Lali papa szülőháza.

  22. June 20th, 2011 at 20:49 | #22

    Valahogy ereztuk hogy az lesz az. Remeltuk hogy a hazszamokat nem irtak at, mert a rajzolt kis terkep es a leiras alapjan tokeletsen illet minden arra az oreg hazra. Rdekes hogy nem is volt masik ilyen oreg haz ott. Honna tudjuk egyebkent hgy ez volt az? Lali Papa felismerte keprol? Tenyleg, Lali Apa miert nem kommentel?

    Udv Vidinbol. Minden a legnagyobb rendben. A folfelek neha kemenyek meg a rekukkal, de megyunk lassan ugy nem faj es tanuljuk a turelmet.

  23. Olgi
    June 21st, 2011 at 05:59 | #23

    Igen, a képről felismerte, pedig akkor még nem emeletes ház volt. Ami késik nem múlik, biztos fog kommentet írni, a 100 nap alatt is írt.

    Miről írtál? Nincs ékezet! Él a netboksi?

  24. June 21st, 2011 at 15:25 | #24

    Hajrá, előre, kitartás!

  25. Tóth H. Zsófi
    June 22nd, 2011 at 23:01 | #25

    @Stavi Viktor – Jegesmedve – Isbjørn
    csak nem jegesmedve lesz a kérelem tárgya, újfent? :) hihi

  26. mohsen hashemi
    February 24th, 2012 at 08:50 | #26


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