This is Mostar–the sort of we’renotinkansas/croatiaanymore part.
The Croatian and Bosnian Armies had a little falling out and the Croatians decided to shell Mostar. This Mosque, like a lot of the buildings, was totally caved in and destructed. But they’ve rebuilt a lot of the old part of town in the last ten years or so, and a lot of it is stunningly gorgeous again.
The hill and the bridge (Mostar’s Stari Most) are both pretty. But in aforementioned falling out, the hill ate the bridge. Nothing like good high ground to destroy something beautiful. 1993 I think is the year that that happened. Have you ever walked through a graveyard where most of the headstones say 1994? I was in the third grade and then I was in the fourth grade. Mrs. Woods and then Mrs. Bellows for me. No one in the Terra Linda hills shelling Vallecito Elementary.
We stayed in the white building and played chess on the skeleton of the one next door.
Bullet holes are nothing short of everywhere. When we first rolled through town on the bus, I had a little bit of an ohhfuck in my stomach. But it’s not the holes you have to worry about. It’s those big metal things that wannabe gangsters get tattooed on their forearms that you have to worry about. Those and nationalism–and the guns at least didn’t seem to be around. The war being ten years over and all–but still.
I took sort of an irrational appreciation of clouds while taking Bart home from the city one day. It turns out they’re everywhere. The best are before a storm, or maybe the best are during a storm but from somewhere else. Like if you’re on the train from SF to Berkeley and it’s hailing in Lafayette, there’d be five miles of white fluff only partially hidden by Grizzly Peak. And you know that all of that white you see is just light that is most definitely not getting to Lafayette–because in Lafayette it is most surely dark and grey and shitty (Cool Grey 80%), but to you it’s cottonballs. One could surely make a leap here between cotton and slavery but that would be hellatrite.
Between that last one and this one was Sarajevo and Budapest. I guess I forgot to take pictures. Fun fact: WWI started in Sarajevo when Franz Ferdinand was assassinated about two blocks from where I stayed. I saw Bosnia beat Malta 1-0 in a soccer game. I played soccer with some locals and an Israeli/Ukranian who spoke Hungarian and stayed at my hostel. My feet are still a little blistered from this because of my vans that look like sneakers but fuck I guess I should have gone for the Pumas. Anyway–this photo is from Warsaw, which is in Poland.
Folliage and fixing bike.
Folliage and riding now fixed bike. Not fixed but, you know, working. I did however see students on trackbikes and resisted the urge to accostandbackwardcircle–but mostly because of the possible language barrier and the blisters running from toe to arch.
This landed next to me.
Reflection of old library in new windows. Oh, the juxtaposition!
There’s a guy up there. A good photograph would have you see the people kissing on the billboard first and then the guy sillhouetted against a light background–but I didn’t want to walk the ten feet to the right to get a good sillhouette. Oh, the laziness!
Is the best light through bus and airplane windows?
My Jump Broken Branches offering. Better late than never, also way better because of the photo above it and this is in Vilnius, Lithuania.
Two white horses in ay line.
Not quite an airplane window, but good light comes through storm clouds, too.
And Paulius caught some good light in the Best Cafe In Vilnius–at the contemporary art center.
When I get my hands on photoshop I’ll bring out the blue in that umbrella–but it still works.
Letters tied to a balloon. Romantic?
This is Paulius (different Paulius) and what may or may not be an angel fallen straight from the storm clouds. We were locking bikes in an (empty) alley, and then I looked up and saw this man sprawling on the ground, trying to get up. He came close but gravity overtook and audibly thunked his head on the cobble. So we went to see how he was. He was drunk and we helped him get as far as a bus. I didn’t understand any of the conversation while we walked, but he seemed like a nice enough guy and worth propping up on the way to the bus stop. He offered us 100 Litas. He was wearing a white jean suit and white shoes, and he may or may not have been an angel fallen from the storm clouds.
Block-Living at the realest.
Tonight I’m on a train to St. Petersburg to try out this Russian visa. My camera ran out of batteries and I would have charged them but opted instead to charge my own–and woke up this morning feeling quite rested but with a dead d50.
I’m waist deep in book six of seven of The Dark Tower and I’m a little afraid of finishing the series.