Trip Start Jul 20, 2009
Trip End Sep 06, 2009

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Where I stayed
Virginia's summer house

Flag of Lithuania  ,
Saturday, August 8, 2009

We arrived in Zarasai too late for the tourist information centre. We had nowhere to stay and we had to stop for the night. We'd been driving for about six hours. Zarasai is the first habitation in Lithuiania that we thought might have a hostel or if it came to the worst, a campsite. We were well knackered, and we really didn't want to put up a tent and try to cook on one ring, if there was a better option available.

I stared at the big map of the town in the main square. A Lithuanian couple, also tourists, started chatting. We discussed possibilities, and then I wandered off to try and find a bank to get out some Litas, as I only had about 49p in the local currency.

Some time later, I found a cash-machine, and bumped into the same couple again, who seemed to be taking pity on me. They asked again if I had anywhere to spend the night, and suggested the hotel in the centre of town. Naturally, I turned this down, as the cost for six of us is not even worth enquiring about. I made noises about finding one of the wooden huts that seem to be dotted about for hire. The Lithuanian couple started accosting passers-by, asking them about the local accommodation.

I just stood there, trying to look intelligent, and understanding nothing of the conversation in Lithuanian. They must have made us out to be complete charity cases, because the next thing I got, was that the local they had accosted, was willing to offer us use of her summer house, providing we had our own bedding (which we did). Her name was Virginia, and she lives in Leeds with her English husband.

This bizarre turn of events meant we spent the evening down by the lakeside, in Virginia's completely empty summer house. They are doing it up, so the only things inside it are a few tools and some unused, newly bought appliances. The water and electricity worked, so we blew up out airbeds in the empty rooms and went for a walk round the lake with a gorgeous sunset.

That is serendipity.
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