DAVE- I'm quite certain that the beauty of Brasov and surounding Carpathian mountains, along with the obvious immense skill of it's mechanics finally won Ab over to Romania, despite initial reservations. I can tell this by the loving glint in her eyes every time the country's name is mentioned and every time we hear the 'rhythmic' knocking sound coming from the engine when driving over bumps (clearly a result of the genius mechanics' love for syncopated beats, which led them to install a novel percussion instrument in the engine whilst fixing our oil leak). Great town, great people and beautiful views of the Capathian Mountains from the top of mount Tampa which rises up from the city's walls.
There was also a fascinating museum which details the towns history and essentially gives an overview of the development of civilisation in itself. I particularly enjoyed the in depth coverage of the medical history.
ABI - Brasov consists of a bunch of over priced attractions such as a church, and the other church.... oh, and another church. When you have coughed up the extortionate entry price you are let into a museum, church, castle where most sections are roped off with little info on what you are seeing. Then there is the random selection of medical instruments which they display in every museum, church, castle you come across. It all leaves you wondering how they don't look at you with shame on your way out after blantently robbing you!
Meanwhile, whilst we explored the highlights of Brasov, we had entrusted the Bongo, black snot and all, to a Romanian mechanic. After a number of days of being told 'maybe today you pick up the car, maybe tomorrow...I don't know. He is good mechanic' it was finaly confirmed that the car was ready. Very eager to pick it up we asked how much it would cost, 'hmmmm parts 200lei, labour I don't know, you decide! How much is it worth to you?' what! Is this normal? Just tell us how much!!! Anyway after a couple more phone calls in Romanian to his friends, Greg (our helpful friend, usually the hostel driver) managed to get some kind of ball park figure together. We picked up the car, went for a drive, it over heated! Opened the bonet and found quite a large piece of the engine missing! On the positive side we did find a bolt and an Allen key left under the bonet, very useful! When trying to get the piece back we were told 'mechanic, he out of town, maybe he come back tomorrow, maybe the day after! I'm sorry he good mechanic!' Anyway, finally got the piece put back in drove back to the hostel and the lady tells us that the mechanic forgot to charge us for delivery of a part! A bit strange after being told to 'pay what you think!'
The one redeeming feature of Brasov is you can buy a massive ice cream that contains over 8 flavours for under £1. Tastes crap but still it looked delicious!
We hit the road in the Bongo very fast and deliberated over the new knocking noise that was developing under the driver's seat.