Friday, September 26, 2014



Within Albania is one spot where all Albanians say you simply must go.  They call this the most beautiful city in the country.  Saranda.

It's nice looking, I'll give them that.

Within this city is a restaurant which prepares food then serves it at room temperature for as long as it lasts.  A day, maybe two.  Vegetables and rice.  I eat there for two reasons - first it is cheap ($1.50).  Second, out of all of the restaurants I've eaten at thus far, it is the best the restaurants here have to offer.

The restaurants here are just that bad.

No idea what the heck is going on in their big 'hey we get loads of foreign tourists' town but the food here is just awful.

Fortunately, that means I eat less.

Easy diet time!  Woohoo!


Well, the bottle of Tabasco sauce I bought a couple days ago is about gone.  Today, I will buy another to drink.

For those curious as to my current diet (it changes in every country), here it is:

Noon meal - I go and either get a plate of spaghetti (.70 USD) or some sort of vegetables with rice (1.50 USD).

Evening meal - vegetables with a little bit of meat (3.50 USD) or with extra meat (5.50 USD).  I've no idea what the meat is but it is so so in taste (go go Tabasco) but it helps to flavor the vegetables.  Potatoes, something they call 'green beans' (they're not) or other.  I'm working my way through them now.

Late night snacking - whatever I can get hold of.  Usually pringles, cookies or some sort of sweet.  This is very bad for me and I am drinking Raki mixed with Coke Zero.  Last night, I about finished the whole bottle of Raki which came as a bit of a surprise to me.  Especially not being drunk from it.  But it did help with sleep, which is why I drink.  Well, one of the reasons I drink.  If I don't, sleep is usually difficult (insomnia) if it comes at all and muscle twitches conspire to keep me awake.

I've no idea how many calories I take in or burn.  That is pretty much an 'American thing'.  But the daytime diet seems to sustain me while the snacking keeps my brain happy and my stomach from ripping free and going to hunt on its own.


They have extremely fresh seafood here.  So fresh it was just brought buy a guy who is still wet from the sea in a net bag fresh.

Seafood - even the smell of it - makes me gag.

Hence, I cannot comment on the quality of their seafood dining experience.


As I've been wandering around this town, I've been seeing a lot of posters "Athens - 25 euros."

This has gotten me thinking.  Should I go back to Athens?

It's been 23 years or so since last I was there.  Guessing there may have been some minor changes.

From Athens airport I could take the dread evil that is RyanAir to Rome for about 22-30 euros.  From Rome to somewhere else.  I've been thinking about Tunisa but honestly I'm uncertain.

While going to Tunisia would allow me to stay in Europe longer, the question becomes "Can I afford to stay here longer?"  And "Do I want to stay here longer?"

While I would love nothing more than to tour western Europe (when it's not bloody cold out) the funds are simply not there.

So I am contemplating what to do next and the first big decision comes down to 'stay in Europe or bugger off back to Asia?'  And if I go to Asia do I want to do a wild overland trek from Nepal to Cambodia or just go to Cambodia?

When you've got a lot of possibilities, it is rough to narrow it down.

So, I'm trying to live cheaply and ponder what to do next.


Been reading a lot on racism.  It's an interesting topic to me since I am perpetually an outsider.  Since my skin is white, I often look enough like the locals to get asked for directions.  When I am in places where it is obvious I am not a local, the reaction ranges from hostile to curious to friendly.  Note that in the last few countries I've been in it is almost always friendly.

In all my travels, I've only met one other traveler from the USA who was black.  [I do not use the term 'African American' for a couple reasons, among them are the facts that not all blacks are from Africa and I've been to and lived in and know more about African customs than many of them.  In fact, if all life originated in Africa as is hypothesized, we are all 'African' to some extent.  Also, only people in the USA use this term.  The rest of the world just says 'black' or 'white' or 'oriental' or 'indiginious' or whatever.]  I asked him why he thought more black people from the USA didn't travel.  He gave the same answer as many non-blacks I've spoken with - time and money.  But the ratio is off.  If about 13% (according to Google) of the USA is black, one in ten travelers from the USA should be.  They aren't.

So I'm guessing they are all incarcerated.

Which brings me back to reading about 'sun down towns'.  If you don't know what they are, I'd advise reading more history - as they even exist today.

Note that it is not my intent to try to eliminate or even educate others on racism.  Not my job.  I just try to judge other people based on things like "Do they laugh at my jokes?"  "Do they want to feed me or drink with me?"

I am totally self centered in these things.  But, I admit it!


Saranda, Albania

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