I wasn’t even going to go to Sarajevo. I just wanted to Beeline for the beach! But there doesn’t seem to be any public transportation the does Belgrade —> Dubrovnik. So here we are. I rented an Airbnb this time. Lately I been using booking.com a lot. They give me 10% discounts for being a loyal customer or something. I like it because it tells you exactly how close you are to the city Centre, and they give you the Actual price right off the bat. So it’s perfect for a busking adventure. Airbnb is good for a romantic adventure. You’ll get a whole apartment for a nice price, but you have to do your research to find out which neighborhood you’re in. Also right as you’re about to book and pay, they boost up the price. It’s like.. oh 16€ a night, cool! Ok so for two nights, that will be... 45€. Umm.. what? And with Airbnb, I find that you often have to climb lots of stairs, cut through random alleys, jump through hoops and fences to get the keys and such. It’s much more homey and economical than a hotel, though.
In any event, I tried an Airbnb just for old times' sake. It said right in the title that it was an apartment in the old town. I had to climb lots of steps but I guess that’s normal since Sarajevo is in the mountains. It’s so pretty. Maybe the prettiest town so far. Well everyone’s pretty in her way. Vienna is grand like an Empress. Zagreb is like a beautiful peasant girl. And Sarajevo is like an heirloom jewel box. Belgrade is like... well.. hmm.. Belgrade isn’t a girl at all I don’t think.
Again I spent valuable "doing stuff" time on the bus. Didn’t arrive to Sara til late so I just went and had some dinner real quick and then some much-needed rest. My dinner was so cheap! It was like 4€ for cevapi (meat fingers), a salad, and a drink. They like to drink yogurt as a drink there. It’s nice! Actually I’m not trying to eat that much meat anymore. It’s getting to be too much. Every single meal is meat, around here! And they have weird meats, too. Like that I’ve never had before. I’m not a very adventurous eater tbh. Pretty much, I only like cheese. But Bosnian food is really tasty, still. Really Tasty! I went to the greatest fast food joint of my life there. Greatest. Fast food. Ever.
So I woke up early the next morning And had a wonderful day! I met a really sweet Australian girl at the Laundro-Lounge, And then I walked around the old town and window shopped. I really like the souvenirs they have. Beautiful jewelry and magic Aladdin lamps, and seemingly hand made wool ponchos and socks, with nice designs. It’s a nice change from generic mugs and lighters and t-shirts that say "good girls go to heaven, bad girls go to Sarajevo" with a drawing of a pink stick figure Girl with devil horns. I had a yummy "Bey's soup" which is creamy vegetables and chicken soup (can’t get away from meat), and I climbed the mountain up to the white fortress where you can see the view of the town looking so pretty! Actually I was trying to get to this other castle on the hill but I never found my way there.
So anyway around 4 pm, I started busking on the main walking Street between the old town and the new town, at the top of the park, where the old men play giant chess.
It was such a beautiful sunny day, and I played really well and sold 2 CDs, and overall was quite successful. There were tons of people. The Bosnian currency is strong and people are generous. End of my set (around 7) an older man stopped to talk to me to invite me to a cool bar/jazz club called Pink Houdini. He said they would love to have me play there and I might be able to stay and have a room for free at the hostel. I thought it sounded nice, so I agreed to go, but then the guy would NOT stop talking. I don’t have patience for getting my ear talked off, especially when I’m spent! I was so tired after playing for three hours that I just went home to my little Airbnb and planned my bus ride out of Sarajevo. Turns out there were no buses going to Dubrovnik at night (although the next day at the bus station, the schedule stated a bus leaving for Dubrovnik at 11 pm... hmmm) but yeah and I REALLY didn’t want to spend all beautiful sunny day on a bus, so I booked a ride at 7:15 am (In the Morning!) for the day after next.
We had another amazing day of sunshine on Wednesday, and I thought I’d go busking early to get it out of the way so I could still do things, but something was off. First of all I was hungry when I started, which is never a good idea to busk on an empty stomach. I did have a punnet of sweet strawberries with me, but I don’t get fruit; I never feel satisfied by them. They just make me hungrier. And then my guitar started sounding kind of scratchy and distorted out of the amp, and it was really distracting me. It was hard for me to stay focused. I couldn’t figure out why it could be, but I went to the music shop and bought a new cable, and at first it was better but then it starts scratching again! It wasn’t that bad but It was annoying me, and it felt Like I had to give SOO much energy just to get people’s attention. I was just not feeling it. So I quit early, unfortunately. I went to Pink Houdini to see what was up, since I needed a room for the night. It’s a really cool place with the front all decorated with controversial anti-UN stuff.
I took a room, which was my own actual tiny room with a real bed (fiou!) And then I reluctantly walked into this fast food joint with an array of unidentifiable dishes. The lady was So friendly though! She greeted me with the biggest smile and was so happy to have me as a customer. I had to order something. I asked if she speaks English and she said “a little” so I asked her “what’s this?” Pointing to some dish that looked like cheese. She says “That’s... uhh... pan..creas?” Gulp. Pancreas?? “Wait wait, let me see..” so she goes on google translate to find the word, and she shows it to me. “Zucchini.” Oh. Zucchini. And cheese. And chicken, of course. Ok! And then she served it to me with some mashed potatoes and a bread roll and some herbs on top and it was Soooo Yummy!!! Mmm cheese. Then I went on a mission to change my coins, and was mostly met with judgment, disdain, and disgust in shops and restaurants. No bank wanted my coins, even. But I can’t travel to Croatia with a big bag full of Bosnian change! For dinner I had klepe: Dumplings filled with meat or cheese. I had the cheese klepe of course. And it was So good! All covered in some sour cream sauce with oil on top and garlic! Mmm garlic. The traditional dishes were way more prominent in Sarajevo than in Belgrade or Zagreb, as far as I could tell. The other places had a lot of like.. grill, or pasta... like international stuff. But In Bosnia, at least in the old town, they just serve their own food, mostly, and I like that. (even if I’m scared of the meat). But yeah so The waiter at the Klepe place didn’t want my filthy coins either, but I FINALLY found another fast food place with a really cute boy working who was Bosnian but he really spoke with an American accent. By the way, Sarajevo has So. Many. Hotties! Usually, in life, I see WAY more hot girls everywhere than guys but here I’m telling you it was the total opposite. But as I was saying, I slowly got rid of my coins, little by little, until I reached the pink Houdini, and went in to hang out. The waitress was making her jewelry to display and sell at the bar. It was really nice. I bought a pair of earrings and a bracelet, with the rest of my change. We hung out, along with the manager and a few guests who walked in. It really felt Like home. They have an awesome stage set up with drums, several guitars, keyboards and mics. And EVERY instrument is wearing a hat. Unfortunately, there weren’t any musicians so I didn’t get to experience the musical side of Pink Houdini. Also, no one seemed to be really keen on hearing me play so I didn’t feel like just imposing my music on them. If they didn’t care, I didn’t dare.
I was more interested in reading a picture book I found about Gypsies. Gypsies are so cool. I wish they were more like in the olden days with magic and fortune-tellers. They have an amazing history. Kind of sad, too. Stupid Gypsies. Always scavenging and “soliciting alms”. But I love their style. Of dress. So that’s it, I mean, I’ll let the pictures speak a thousand words and leave it at that. I had an ok night of rest, and my taxi picked me up at 6:30 am (cause I smart and I ordered it the night before!) and it was so wonderfully worth it because it cost like 2€. For breakfast I ate some DELICIOUS pastries I also bought the night before. One of them was an apple and cinnamon wrapped in dough! Whyyyy do we not have that at home. PROBABLY the best bakeries I’ve ever experienced in my life. And the price is REdiculous. We’re like 10 minutes away from Dubrovnik now, riding along the coast, and the water is so sparkly and turquoise mixed with blue, and it’s a warm beautiful day!