At first view from the lakeside the castle appeared to be more than the official 500 metres away across the lake. However, I was soon distracted by sail boats, people thrashing about in small green rowing boats and picnickers by the path. There were vendors selling amber jewellery, ice creams, and postcards.

The stall and shop holders all spoke good English and are very honest – the man I bought two international stamps from seemed very offended when I suggested that he didn’t have to turn all his pockets and table drawers inside out to give me the exact change – he fixed me with a stare and said “A deal is a deal,” and then rifled through his briefcase for the final three coins.

I wondered about leaving him a tip of the coins he had spent so long finding, but thought better of it.

This extract is from the book – Julian’s Journeys