Thank God, we arrived back in
We left last Friday in our new car (thank you all again!) and drove north through the border with FYROM (
I planned the stay-over in
The trip went very smoothly. The car was great, and the border crossings were surprisingly easy. All in all, we were in
At our Serbian friends’ suggestion, I had made a reservation at a specific hotel, which was supposed to be well known. Unfortunately, almost none of the road signs had English translations (as they do in
(The first photo is from our hotel room window, looking down on
We asked someone at the hotel’s front desk for a good place to eat, and we were off. Of course, (our understanding of) the directions led us nowhere, so we just picked one. It was good Serbian food!
After eating, we walked around inside the old city fortress, which has been nicely utilized as an integral part of the modern city. An old mosque inside the fortress is an art gallery and an old steam bath is a restaurant.
Soon it was late and we decided to see more of the city in the morning before heading on to
In the morning, Friday’s beautiful, sunny weather disappeared and as soon as we checked out of the hotel to start sightseeing, a torrential downpour began. So we ran to the car and tried to drive to the birthplace of St Constantine, an old Roman imperial villa called Mediana, which is located on the edge of the city.
We asked around and finally pieced together directions.
“It’s down this road 2 kilometers.”
We were getting close. About 10 kilometers down the road later, eyes peeled, we still didn’t see any signs of anything looking remotely like Roman ruins, or even a sign for Mediana.
We stopped and asked for directions again.
“It’s back down that road on the right.”
Apparently, we had missed it. Well, we would try again. Eyes glued to the right, we drove back down the same street. Nothing.
Still pouring rain, we decided we would have to be satisfied with knowing that we must have at least driven over the spot where St Constantine was born, and headed on to
Three hours later, at about 12:30, we arrived, safe and sound. Since we were early, our hosts – Nebojsa, Lepa, and their daughter, Natasa, were away. So we walked over to the nearby
At 2:00, we headed over to the apartment to meet with our hosts. It was so nice. We spent the rest of the day catching up and being forced to “Eat! Eat! Eat!”
On Sunday morning, Nebojsa drove us over the other (east) side of
It was a beautiful service, with some English and Greek. We met with the bishop at the end of the service and he insisted that we sit with him at his table for coffee afterwards.
We were very impressed by everything – the bishop and the
Stay tuned for that story tomorrow...
All the photos from the trip can be seen here.