One of the people I met my last day in Belgrade was Theresa. Theresa is an American and she teaches English in Sarajevo. She was nice enough to put me up in the empty bedroom in her flat seeing as I was headed that way. Check out the sweet view from my room.
My first day there, we took a day trip to Visoko, a nearby town with a budding claim to fame. It’s often been joked about that a particular hill in Visoko resembles a pyramid but only recently after viewing below the surface via satellite, it’s been purported that there is actually a pyramid underneath. To many anthropologists and other scientists this is a wild claim made by a man lacking credentials but excavation began not one month ago and I got to see what’s been uncovered so far. And here is shot of me at the top standing next to the Bosnia and Herzegovinian flag.
I’m no expert so don’t ask me if this is a legit pyramid. Just remember that if it turns out to be Europe’s first discovered pyramid, I saw it first and if it’s bogus, well, I told you so. The pyramid has lots of Bosnians excited because this would be Europe’s greatest tourist attraction and the country could use the influx of capital to help stabilize it’s fractured politcal union with the Republica Serbska and raise the standard of living of it’s people, in general. You can read up on the pyramid at www.piramidasunca.ba
The next day I visited the Tunnel Museum which is pretty interesting. Basically, the Sarajevans built this tunnel underneath the UN controlled airport to connect the Free Zone with areas under seige by the Serbs during the war. It was a literal lifeline allowing for transport of goods, civilians, soldiers, fuel, and even electricity. Without it, Sarajevo probably would have fallen, likely 300,000 more people would have been executed, and the area might be very different today.
The rest of my time in Sarajevo I spent hanging out with a group of locals, students to whom Theresa introduced me. Here a couple shots of us wylin out in Ildijana’s apartment one night, enhanced by the blue LED lighter I came to love and one of Selma out in main square of the city.
Sarajevo is a multi-ethnic place with a Mosque, Synagogue, Catholic, and an Orthodox Church all basically on the same street within 5 minutes of eachother. Old men play chess on oversized boards in the park and the place bustles with a Turkish style bazaar. After all, they were ruled by the Ottomans for centuries and they remain a pretty secular Muslim country today.
I had a great time hanging out, listening to Sevda (a type of traditional music), wathcing South Park DVDs in Theresa’s apartment, and of course, frequenting watering holes both common and chic. Everybody I met was interesting and hospitable. Plus the place has the silliest names for it’s snacks. Check out Theresa with a bag of Chipsy and my favorite-named snack, Barpy.
Anyplace with Barpy has to be said to be moving in the right direction. Bosnia is a beautiful place and for their sake, I hope the pyramid turns out to be real but if not, they’ll be OK. One thing about the people there (besides how cool they are) is that they are survivors.
After a week of good times in Sarajevo, next stop, Split, Croatia.
Posted from Hrvatska (Croatia):
posted Saturday March 2014