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Published: October 30th 2005
Trumpeldor ^ 2
Yesterday I saw a very nice person on the road, who offered me a coffee with him. Well, usually I don't refuse such requests (which I get here twice a day), but this time I refused indeed. Why? because this man's hands were cut. Well, I have got nothing against cripples, but - my main way of communicating with the locals is by hands, so talking to a person without hands would be just a "Shrubbery of deafs" (SIACH CHRESIM). A HIGH-RANK QUEZE
(introduction: the roads here are so narrow, that hardly can two cars pass one in front of the other, not to talk about leaving room for a man standing beside the road).
A car passes on the road once in half hour. Ofanan pisses (is that the way to say mashtin?) once in 2 hours. What is the probability that cars from two conversed directions will pass in the exact time and place where (and when) Oanan pisses? A LOWER-RANK REMARK
Well, not only that the scenario descripted above happened in reality, but also hadn't I stopped my pissing when it happened (a real man never stop pissing in the
Views from Llogara pass
Llogara pass is at 800m height, on the way from Saranda to Himara, which are both coast towns
middle, even would his life be depended in that; eilonw, that was the sentence for you, please add it to the list). And, as you see, I still live and kick (and write). How was there room for everybody on this narrow road? well, maybe the fact that my what-its-name became shorter from the fear helped a little. AN EVEN LOWER-RANK REMARK
Don't you afraid. The girls here are so beautiful (and, thanks god, they haven't heard about the stupid invention of the low-motnayim pants), that everything returned to its natural size very fast.
The Lura lakes are famous for their beauty as well for their extreme remoteness. 4WD drive is essential () no public transport to the park, and there are no 4WD vehicles available to hire () no accommodation () roughly camping is not advisable. The roads are not passable in winter ()
. and so on.
The author of the guidebook havent taken in account the vehicle which enables the best passability the mountain bike; neither did she consider, that very few families would say no to a shy cyclist, who arrived from far away, and asks to sleep in their house for one night.
But, to say the truth, I am not such a superman. I did only a little hiking around. For a longer trip, I should have stayed one more night at a villages family home, and I wasnt ready to do that. Not because of the very basic
conditions (I am used to make my shower by a DLI of cold water within BUL-PGIA toilets since my days in Venezuella), but well, I will tell you all when I am back.
Ofanan ata horeg oti..
The road (...) is very bad (..)at least four hours (...) very wild, desolate country (...) excellent views.
(from the guidebook).
Before flying, I printed at home some 1:50K maps of Albania. I didn't print any map of the north-east, which borders Kosovo, so that by no means I will be able to travel there. Luchi will be jealous, Flaschner will think I am an idiot, but both won't be very surprised to hear that at the end I cycled there indeed. Well, I talked with people around, and also read in the most updated guidebook, and understood that it's utterly safe - and it was so. The only warning was not to get off the road, due to old mines, but I'm used to that from the Golan (Orly, you should be happy that at least I don't take my girlfriends to hike within mine fields, as Luchi is used to do...).
>For the first time I see the fruits of carrying heavy mountain bike (rather than road bike) with me:
about 1/3 of my way by now wasn't asphalted, and even the asphalted roads here are not exactly Netivey Ayalon.
Does anybody have an idea how do you say SICH in Albanian?
The first thing which I noticed while arriving to Albania was the huge number of road-signs on which only one word is written: "LAVAZH". When I asked the locals, they explained me that this means - "car wash".
I find it stupid, that ppl in a country, in which most towns still don't have a reliable water and electricity supply, care so much about the cleaning of their car; and it's even sad, recollecting that the same ppl care so little about the cleaning of their environment - relatively to the Albanians, Israelis are the masters of cleaning, good order and quiet.
Anyway, today I decided that after carrying me along 1200 kms in Albania's fucked "roads", my bike deserves a little gift. So I came into one of these "Lavazhes". At the beginning they thought that I was joking with them, but I well explained them, that if they wash car for 4$, they should wash my bike for 2$
On the way from Kruje to Burrel
without problem (they do it by a pipe, of course, they don't have here automatic machines for that). So now my bike are cleaner as they haven't been for a very long time.
BTW: if you wander how the LAVAZHes get along without normal electricity & water supply - well, they have their own generators; and about the water - well, I was a bit exaverating (though many locals really stock barrels of water for the next water break, which will surely come). Travel date: Sept-Oct/2005 Old Kato
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Don't you know it's against the law in Albania to park your bike on our flag poles? Nice account. Cheers, ~ITS http://www.digitalobjective.com