When we woke up at the central bus station of Zagreb, which had been so calm the previous night, it was already boiling with people walking around with their suitcases and backpacks. Our hideaway was quite good because nobody seemed to realize that we were there, it was already 9 in the morning so we slept around 6 hours. The first thing we did was going to the city center and looking for a photocopy shop to print the check-in. Meanwhile it started to rain and the temperature was quite low for a summer, making our last trip day even sadder. We were wandering around discovering the beautiful Zagreb streets, then we realize that the Zagreb airport didn’t ask for the check-in in paper, so we decided to protect ourselves from the rain in a cafeteria. We found probably the saddest one in the whole city, it was in a dark passageway, conquered by elderly people from a nearby residence enjoying the fresh air, it was like the Walking Dead but with slower Zombies.
After a long while we decided to go out and visit the most touristic places under the intermittent rain. We reached the Ban Jelačić Square, the most famous place in Zagreb where some tourist where trying to understand the big map placed in the entrance.
At the time we were probably unfair with the city, because we weren’t in a mood to appreciate the beauty of Zagreb, but now I realize how beautiful it was. It’s a mix between Eastern Europe and Balkan style, with old majestic buildings that remind the ones from Budapest, very modern and very old trams at the same time and the typical Balkan markets with fresh fruits and vegetables. Anyway, the people seemed much more European than anything else.
We started to walk up toward the old town, some steps further we found the Zagreb Cathedral where there was also a Konzum, we made some pictures (of the cathedral not of the supermarket) and, as it stopped to rain, we decided to eat there.
I found some very cheap beer so I bought it, but once in the checkout I realize that I had confused the price, I came back to Aleksandra quite angry, we really didn’t have any money left. Just when our sandwiches were ready it started to rain again, I was starting to hate Zagreb, we moved looking for a better place to eat, we were very near to have an argue because of the rain and nerves of it being the last day… I guess. We finally ate in a door’s trunk. trying to change the mood, our nerves became in craziness and we start to do stupid things including to offer disgusting marmalade to the pedestrians, at least we started to laugh, it was funny specially because I looked like a real homeless (whit greatest respects to them), here you can see me:
Then we continued our way up a soft hill, from where we made some pictures of the city landscape, then we turned down and, as it was stopping to rain, we stayed for a while in the Ribnjak park playing with Pulguita and feeding her. Zagreb is quite a green city, it’s full of parks and look at this green in the begining of September:
After that break we went again to the city center, we discover nice spots like this square in the Old street Vlaška, the Zrinjevac park that leads to the Josipa Jurja and the kralja Tomislava parks shaping an impressive boulevard that ends on the Central Rail Station of Zagreb.
At that point we started to be very concerned about what was going to happen at the airport with Pulguita, it was too late to make a special check-in for animals, and we even didn’t know if it will be possible to do it there. We had a similar problem, but no so important, with the guitar I had bought in Budapest in the begining of our trip. As I’m an unstable person my mood was going up and down. Lluckily the sun started to shine, so I relaxed a little bit. We thought about asking people if they wanted to buy a third hand guitar, but it didn’t work. Then we decided to look for a Cash-converter with the same result. We also asked for the train schedules for the airport but any of them matched our needs, so we had to come back to our starting point, the bus station.
Once there, we realized that we had no food left for the night, and the airport was going to be too expensive, so I went fast to a big Tesco while Aleksandra stayed on the station with Pulguita. We took the bus with a lot of time to deal calmly all the problems we expected in the airport. It was very hard to say goodbye to the City, the Balkans and, above all, the hitchhiking. When we arrived to airport the gate were still closed, so we ate something and I started to play guitar in the arrivals door to see if someone wanted to buy the guitar, without any luck. We got into the queue just when the check-in to Barcelona opened very scared about the verdict. Unfortunately the moment arrived and the girl in the counter was very clear, Pulguita couldn’t travel even if we paid. because there was no Vueling office in that Airport. When we heard that we wanted to die, my backpack was already in the scales to check the weight so then I told her something that I will always remember: “Give me my backpack back, I’m not going in that plane”. It was not completely spontaneous, because we had been facing this possibility for the whole day, but not taking it as if it was really going to happen. Aleksandra started to cry, she really had to take the plane because she had to work the next day. We thought about it a little bit, but there was not other option, or we abandoned Pulguita there or I had to come back hitchhiking, we even didn’t think about taking any trains or buses, because we were quite far and completely out of money. We kissed for the last time goodbye in a very emotive hug, then she kissed small Pulguita and went to the plane. The detachment was probably harder for Aleksandra than for me, because she was going to face the real life meanwhile I just had to continue doing the same thing I used to do for the last three weeks. I looked for a nice place to sleep at the airport, I found one just near to a promo car (as I like to do), I tied Pulguita’s travel box with my backpack and I closed it with a padlock just in case, I lied down, read for a short moment and fell asleep.