Vič, home away from home.

In case you didn't get the email, we now have an apartment in a neighbourhood just 20 minutes away from the Old Town, by foot. The bus (#6 Drogi Most) gets us to downtown within 5 minutes. Our street is really just a small alley off the main drag, Tržaška cesta. We are on the upper floor of a two storey house, in a small two room flat with a big balcony looking out over a vacant lot and some apartment buildings down the way.

I'm looking forward to going to the market tomorrow and buying primulas to decorate the balcony with. The market is on every day except Sunday (when it is replaced by a huge antiques market that stretches down the banks of the Ljubljanica), and has pretty much anything you would want to buy, from pumpkin seed oil, salads, sourkraut, fresh flowers, home pressed cider, baskets...you get the idea. There are lots of elderly ladies selling plants they have grown, and primulas are everywhere right now. There are also lots of wreaths and bunches of willow and catkin switches. It all seems very pagan. Now that we have a place to decorate and stock with food, I plan to be a regular at market...as if I don't get enough of it at home! We do well with our little farmer's market at Trout Lake, but I have to say, Ljubljana kicks our ass in a major way.
But back to the apartment for a moment. The place has been renovated in the last year, and is very bright and clean. Our appliances are basic: small, European fridge (think college dorm-style beer fridge), two burners and a boiler smaller than the fridge that we turn on with a light switch. There are lots of outlets and lights, and the apartment is furnished in Slovenian Ikea style. Three huge cupboards with matching beds and two desks. We moved everything around on our first night, putting two of the single beds together and converting the third into our guest space/couch.

The landlord has promised to return tomorrow with dishes, pots and pans, sheets and the like. They were highly apologetic about not having these things ready for us, but they hadn't expected that we would want to move in right away. They were very nice, just as the housing coordinator said, and we chatted and laughed together for awhile before going to get our massive bags from the hostel. I had been dreading moving everything our stuff over on the bus, but then realized that we could just call a cab. I take taxis so rarely in Vancouver, that I don't even think of taking them in other countries. I'm also paranoid about cost and getting taken for a ride, but it only worked out to 5 euros, including a fairly large tip. Interestingly, people generally do not tip here, unless they get really excellent service.

From our place to downtown by taxi should only be about 3 euros (the hostel was on the other side of the centre), which is handy since the buses stop running somewhere between 1030pm and midnight. I'm not quite sure how to tell exactly when the #6 stops running, since the bus schedule is near impossible to figure out. Service is definitely over by midnight though. This is sort of bizarre since Slovenians only start partying after 10 (at the absolute earliest). Things don't really get started until after midnight, and are likely to carry on till early morning. We went to bed on Friday night with a party raging outside in the squatted army barracks (Metelkova) next door to the hostel, and it was still kicking off at 930 the next morning.

Off to the pub next door (we are at the Xplorer Net Cafe on the bank of the river) to watch the Arsenal vs Man U match and drink borovničevec (blueberry brandy for me) and Laško (local beer for Jay). For once, I hope Arsenal wins considering our loss to Liverpool yesterday.


No comments: