Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Travel Update: Prishtina, Kosovo

Where to begin? Since my lost post, I've darted down the blue watered Croatian coastline, ducked around the largest fjord in southern Europe and climbed over the Accursed Mountains. I've ate more burek and drank more pivo than is good for anyone and now I'm dodging this Kosovar rain/mud storm at an internet cafe. The trip's been so many things and I hope to provide a little more synthesis when I'm back in Paris on April 27.

But for now, I'll give a quick summary of my time in this young nation. My friend Rafael and I left the bus station at about 6 am and walked up Bill Klinton (that's how they spell it) street and made our way to the "city center." The city has no true center except for the UNMIK compound (UN Mission in Kosovo) housing lots of police and development workers. This is the first time I've really seen an active UN or EU in a developing country. Aside from all the SUVs brandishing the yellow stars of the EU, I haven't seen any unified projects except for the park financed by the Italian government near my hostel. Thanks, Silvio!

But, otherwise, Prishtina sprawls for several dirty and dusty blocks of cigarette hawkers and concrete buildings. I hope the US remains high in the hearts of the Kosovo people because if we make a bad move and they catch up with the rest of the world in Bush bashing they'll have to rename just about everything from Robert Dole Street to Route 66 Cafe.

Off to Sarajevo tomorrow, then an extended stay in Mostar before dashing back to Zagreb and Paris! Will have many, many pictures when I'm back.

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