Thursday, 26 January 2012

Ljubljana, Beograd, Sofia

Ljubljana (Slovenia)
The city with an unpronounceable name, the city with lots of j's, the beloved city. This is the only place with cool weather where people are still eating outside. This is the new Reykjavik - the houses and people look the same as there, Slovenian and Icelandic have the hv [kv] sound which is quite rare, and they have the same type of hot dog stands.

Belgrade aka Beograd (Serbia)
Concrete - Stray dogs - Trams - Crumbled buildings - Abandoned Buildings - Bakeries - People eating stuff from the bakeries on the go.

Sofia (Bulgaria)
So I was hungry for breakfast and next to the place I am staying at in Sofia is a little eatery. I go in, there are nice steam trays with cabbage rolls and the like but then I see a dish that looks like an omelette with potatoes and egg sort of like a frittata. I would rather have that than cabbage rolls for breakfast so I order it and sit down and take a big turns out to be a pasta and sweet custard bake! What in the name...?! I doused it with vinegar and tried to eat the rest but couldn't down it all.
Then I get a postcard from a shop in the metro station and I want to buy a stamp but then the shopkeeper says no stamps here, I must go to the Central Hall near the McDonald's. I remember a sign pointing to Central Hall and I remember seeing a McDonald's near this area from the tour that I took yesterday, so I go near there. Walking around, I see nothing so I go into a stationery shop because they must sell stamps there, right? This must be the place the shopkeeper was talking about. What I understand of this woman's English is that the post office is located on the second floor of this building, where there is the parking garage. So I go to look for the parking garage in this edifice and I see stairs so I take it and I end up at an abandoned floor with an abandoned tattoo parlour and some other random, not open shops. On the third floor there's some random official-looking office and asking for the post office, the guy leads me downstairs and then points across the street and across a parking lot to another building that looks almost like a church. Once inside, it looks just like a Balkan version of Pacific Mall in Scarborough. The shops are set up in exactly the same way and there are lots of food stores. So very local. There are stores specifically for selling fish, cheese, yogurt, candies - and lots of candies, especially Turkish-style candies - and some fastfood places. And then tucked away in a little corner of the second floor of this building is the post office. Who would've known that in this church-like building was another world?

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