It’s Ricci. I am one of the new short terms staying in Tirana until the end of June. I’m a young psychology student from Germany. I am really enjoying my stay so far, though there is not much work for us to do and I expected something different, more stressful. But I don’t complain, the weather mostly is fantastic and Tirana has a lot of things to explore! So we use our free time to travel around, get in touch with the people, see new and interesting things. I still want to visit the mosque and other churches for example!
I have to find out why so many Albanians hang stuffed animals on their balcony, which become really dirty and look a bit sad, hanging there on the wall, watching the traffic. Please comment if you have any suggestions! 🙂
One very nice experience I’d like to share with you happened on our latest trip to Pogradec, a beautiful small town at the shore of a beautiful lake, surrounded by beautiful mountains with beautiful snow toppings 🙂
While walking through the small streets of the city we were spoken to by an old women. We hardly said hello to her in Albanian and were about to continue our way, when she invited us for a coffee into her home. She showed us their small garden where her husband plants vegetables and we followed her up the stairs and sat down on an old plastic table. Her Husband joined us but didn’t speak a lot – I feared he looked a bit grimly. But the woman brought some coffee with loads of sugar and biscuits and the obligatory glass ob tab water. We introduced ourselves using our poor Albanian skills and tried to start a conversation, it was a big fun because we didn’t understand each other that well, using gestures, an Albanian dictionary and mostly “po” and “jo”. The couple didn’t understand a word of English, we hardly understood a bit Albanian, but it worked. We spent a nice hour together, also phoning the woman’s daughter, which we met on the next day. We had a very interesting talk about Albanian politics, NGOs, the coming elections and the economical situation. I was really impressed to experience this amazing hospitality despite all our communication problems! The people seem very open minded and curious to me. I am optimistic that the two months down here are going to be an experience full of interesting conversation, improvised action and beautiful nature and beautiful people 🙂