Friday, 8 June 2007

6th June

6th June

Warsaw to Poznan
Arrival 52347km.

Just realised that it's been 10000km since I started out on this trip!

The journey from Warsaw wasn't all that great. The traffic in the city was really busy; practically gridlocked in some places and it took mee the best part of an hour just to get out of the city. Once beyond the city limits, the road was single carriageway and not all that well surfaces and the journey to Poznan was a slow one, stuck behind trucks or buses for a lot of the way. As a result, even though I'd started out from Warsaw early enough, it was about 4.30pm by the time I arrived at Camping Malta (beside Lake Malta and the new Zoo). The campsite is fine; modern and well looked after, situated in parkland with a lake and also an artificial ski slope! I got organised and checked with the girl at reception how far it was into the city. About 3km, so easily walkable.

I was parked up in a quiet spot and with no-one around, I decided to sieze my opportunity to give Hermione her badly needed and overdue oil and filter change. I'd bought a cheap basin at a supermarket earlier to drain the oil into, so wormed my way under her and drained off the old oil and she's now all freshly lubricated! While I was under, I spotted the cause of the rattling noise that I'd began to think was the turbo. The front exhaust bracket has snapped, but it's only really obvious when the engine is running (I spotted it while checking for oil leaks) and at certain revs and only with the engine under load, the bracket's broken parts are rattling off each other. Also, the gearbox mounting looks to be on it's way out and is possibly the cause of the bracket snapping, so both will need to be replaced. All this still leaves the strange case of the turbo warning lamp still being on, although she's running fine. Could be just a dodgy pressure switch..... dunno..... I don't have any way of testing the boost pressure, so this will need to wait until home.

It was a hot day, 27C, so after a shower, I stuck on shorts and walked in to the city through the edge of the park and over the river. There were trams running in to the centre from the main road (about 400m from the camping) - I should really have checked with reception if they had tickets for the way back. It was easy to find the centre as it was well signposted, and the old part is really pretty, although I feel I'm starting to get 'Old Market Square' overload! The square had been reconstructed after the end of WW2 in the same way as Warsaw, and is absolutely beautiful, with the large town hall in the middle and merchants' houses round the edge, with bars and restaurants doing a roaring trade in the wednesday evening sunshine. The place was jumping, but I managed to get a seat at a table in a restaurant and ordered dinner.

Once I'd let the food digest a bit, I walked out of the older part of the city out to Ulica Swiety Marcin and up to the shopping area, which was quieter by this time. The light was starting to go, so I about turned and headed back towards the tram stop, but couldn't work out how to buy a ticket, as there were no machines around, and the man I asked at the bus terminus office didn't speak any English, so I just hoofed it back to the campsite. It wasn't that far anyway, and the heat had died down in the dusk. I'll have a better look around tomorrow.....

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