Tuesday, October 16, 2001

It's Dubrovnik, the place we thought we'd never go to because it was so hyped up by everyone. And to my great surprise, it's actually worthy of the hype. Yeah, it's totally beautiful, the old town especially. It's all sprawled round a rocky coastline with little forested islands dotted around, and the old town is surrounded by giant town walls. The place feels relaxed, but not stagnant. Yup, Dubrovnik's good.

We arrived here at 2pm yesterday and after surviving a ferocious attack by a ton of psychopathic women desperate to sell us a room for the night (two Japanese travellers were less fortunate than ourselves and the last I saw was their bodies being ripped to bloody chunks by the furious horde) we found our hostel, where we are staying now.

The intention was to rest, relax, and recover from being up the entire night and the night previous to that (save 3 hours sleep, mostly on a stairwell), and the fact that in 36 hours we'd eaten only a plate of Mama!'s scrambled eggs and a pizza that had gone right through us. We'd also just had an 8 hour bus journey, and a cold wait in Sarajevo bus station. So rest, after a little food, was the order of the day.

This, of course, didn't go to plan. We began ok, getting some cheap takeaway in the old town. Simon then decided to go back and sleep, while I reckoned on walk around the giant old town walls. This I did, and it was very beautiful and peaceful, mercifully it now being off-season. I headed back to the hostel, ready for a quiet night.

As I passed a cafe just before the hostel, I heard Simon shout "Niall!" He was with a bald English guy called Peter, who was staying in the hostel, and they'd met when Simon climbed a telegraph pole to get into the hostel. The main door had been closed, and I had the keys, so he'd been forced to break in by climbing a telegraph pole next to the upstairs patio bit. Peter, plus an Australian (Australian? Abroad? Well, there's a novelty...) girl called Alice, had been there and seen this most probably bizarre sight, but Simon had explained it away with "Don't worry, I'm not a burlgar, I'm staying here".

Anyway, what came of all this was drinking. We bought a heap of Ozujsko (alas, no Tomislav) from a shop and drank the night away. We were joined by others - Australians and Canadians - and the drinking was steady. Later on, Alice managed to somehow bring up the perhaps dubious topic of "double fisting" and within 10 minutes her, me and Simon managed to scare off all the surplus Australians/Canadians as they retreated in disgusted horror.

Anyway, I did get 6 hours sleep in the end (waking up at 7am because my watch mistakenly said 9am, and I thought I'd missed breakfast) and I think it's going to be a bit of a drinking session tonight, by the looks of it. There's a place nearby with bottles (and not gay quantities) of Ozujsko for 40KN (about 35p), so we're going to see how many we can clear. The outdoor patio section of the hostel is warm, pleasant and relaxed, so makes for a pleasant spot to drink.

That's about it then. We should be heading to Monty Negro about tomorrow, if we're not too hungover.

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