Arriving in Banja Luka, Serbian Bosnia.

We have travelled through five countries today to finally reach the Bosnian Serb capital – Banja Luka. This is a vibrant city full of tree-lined boulevards and buzzing cafes.

We were warmly received on the border by officials who were delighted that such a large and enthusiastic delegation were coming to Banja Luka. They were fascinated by everyone’s insistence that they also receive a stamp in their passport – something locals try to avoid to save using up precious space in their documents. “My arm is killing me” exclaimed the border guard as he returned to the office where I was speaking with his colleague. “I can’t believe that all 76 of them made me stamp their papers.”

The journey from Otford to Bosnia took 36 hours including stops and our arrival has been met with warm hospitality and torrential rain.

Our camp is now set and the tents bravely hold off the water. Even this great soaking is not dampening the spirits of a n incredible group who are ready for anything.

After a hot meal and a song we read from Psalm 29:11 “The Lord gives strength to His people. The Lord blesses His people with peace.” May this be your experience too, wherever you read this.

As I close, the city is plunged into darkness as another of the frequent powercuts hit. Thank you for “travelling” with us as you follow this blog.

Oak Hall in Zagreb

This afternoon, after traversing Austria and Slovenia, we crossed the border into Croatia. We drove directly to the capital Zagreb where we are now exploring ancient alleyways and open squares. It’s a bank holiday in the city today giving it an air of relaxed festivity.

The central monument in the city’s central square is to Ban Josip Jelcic – the leader of the country’s uprising against the Austro-Hungarian empire.

Here we all are in front of the monument.