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small cyan square I am in a loud bar called "Club Podhod". A "podhod" means an underground passage (which is where the entrance to this place is located). I'm on a painfully slow machine (one of two, neither of which seem to get much use) so this entry won't be very detailed. I'm in a nice place, but the language has me bewildered - in fact I'm sure now there's no multi-month international travel in my immediate future - dealing with it all is just too wearying.

small yellow square This keyboard is rigged for the Slovenian language, which only has 25 characters - no Q, W, X, or Z, but thy have three additional ones where they put that upside down "carrot" (ie the "little hat": ^) over the C, S, and Z; so there's additional keys for them too. (It makes those letters sound like the "_h" diphthong equivalents.) Signs with those characters add to the unreality of this country, what makes it look like some strange kingdom where Tin Tin might have an adventure.

small green square This city, Ljubljana, is a great bit of Europe. In its center is a small mountain with a castle on top, and a tame river meanders through, crossed by many bridges (including two of its unique features, the "Triple Bridge" and the "Dragon Bridge"). In fact dragons are big here, because this is where legends claim Jason (of the Argonauts) slew the dragon. I have sampled their native dishes of "potica" (a nut roll which I found to be ho-hum) and "burek", a flaky pastry with meat, cheese or apple filling that's served warm - it's great!

small gray square One thing they're not quite up-to-date on here is reasonable places to stay - I'm in the socialist-era "Hotel Park", a high-rise. Attributes which make this a second-world establishment include:

  • If it's illuminatable, they don't waste power by lighting up their roof-top sign
  • Although I've spied rooms with televisions and carpeting, my own has a linoleum floor and its only appliance is a dial telephone
  • There's one elevator for the even-numbered floors, and one for the odd (naturally I get to use the latter)
  • The sink's faucets are connected backwards, and they have this charming "Soyuz" styling
Plus my bed has sheets and blankets instead of the down comforters I've had everywhere else this trip. Maybe that's just a Slovenian difference - another is that police and emergency vehicles here make that wailing siren noise we're all familiar with in America, rather than the European two-note deal evoked by the beginning of "I Am The Walrus".

small purple square Today not only did I walk up to the castle to enjoy the view, I also visited their Museum of Modern History, which uses light and sound spectaculars (and more traditional exhibits) to describe the recent past of Slovenia. It was fun, although the English text available was limited. I'm reminded of something D said about Europe around the time when I first met her - that every town here has a castle, a museum, and a cathedral - or as Kraftwerk put it

Parks, Hotels and Palaces
Europe Endless
For this trip my Palace was the Würzburg Residenz. Today I walked through the huge park here (called "Tivoli") to reach this museum, and I also "did" a castle, so that's it for this trip - a secret of successful European travel is to limit your exposure to these dazzling monuments, or you get burned out. I've also inspected Munich's Fraunkirche Dom, in addition to others, but I breeze through any cathedral I come to just because those buildings amaze me so.

small violet square Health Status

The hip pain I reported in my last entry faded as mysteriously as it appeared, so other than the expected fatigue I'm doing fine. The resurgent plantar wart on my left foot is making its presence felt more acutely, however - another visit with the podiatrist's laser is indicated.

Dom - cathedral
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