Two oil changes, three illicit lay-by stops, and one probable speeding ticket down, we were travelling with the rising sun to our backs (I'd assume, if we were up that early). We ticked off more eastern European countries that Stalin in his prime: Czechia, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria - with distance travelled directly correlating to frequency of horse and cart sightings.
Charlie was comfortably topping the "stall league table", Rach was busy bending space and time to visit every town with a scrabble score of 20 or more, and Owen was busy developing his own brand of music - a hybrid of early nineties jungle and modern day dirty grime.
We visited a revamped salt mine in Turda (real place, and definitely not crap, despite the nominative inference), tackled the Transfăgărășan Highway in fog thicker than Rachel's former locks, were joined by a couple of hitch-hikers on the way passed Budapest (making the back of the car a very intimate experience for Owen!) and visited the abode of Vlad the Impaler (Dracula) the oft misunderstood reformist, man of the people, and lover of stake-based retribution.
Saying goodbye to data roaming at an "eventful" beach party in Varma Veche, we crossed the border into Turkey - an amazing country, a feast of culture, and home to one of the most impressive mosques in the world.
The adventure was well and truly underway.