We’d driven across the south of Poland five years previously having crossed into Zakopane from the Slovakian Tatras Mountains to visit Krakow. The condition of the roads was poor and driving behaviour equally so, with a general lack of discipline around speed limits, signalling and overtaking.
As we left the smooth asphalt of the 104 near Germany’s Löcknitz and bounced onto cheaply-laid concrete, Bertha clocked up 1000 trip miles and we drew in breath.
It turned out not to be so bad. Once on the main A10, the road was tarmac and the single lane traffic moved at speeds of 55mph tops, and slowed uniformly to 30mph in urban areas which included tiny roadside hamlets of one or two houses and barns.
Signs advised that speeds were monitored by radar, and frequent cctv cameras as well as surreptitiously-placed police cars in shadowy corners.
Navigating the chaotic roadway through Szczecin we crossed tram lines and train tracks in four lanes of traffic to reach our camp on the opposite side of the river West Oder. Warmly welcomed at the pretty EU-funded pleasure boat marina we noticed the tiny Union Flag amidst those of the member states and wondered if it portended the future of ‘Pudding Island’ on the continent.