How to make 3 countries in 1 day

Trip Start Jul 07, 2008
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Trip End Aug 05, 2008


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Flag of Albania  ,
Thursday, July 24, 2008

POLSKI:
Z Ohrydu wzielismy autobus do granicy albanskiej (110denarow=2Euro/2os.) i przeszlismy przez obie granice pieszo. Najpierw jednak musielismy czekac na dworcu przez godzine, bo bardzo inteligentna Bogna nie zorientowala sie, ze wraz z przekroczeniem granicy grecko-macedonskiej, zmienilismy strefe czasowa i przez prawie 3 dni zylismy "o godzine za wczesnie".  Droga do Albanii prowadzila niemal caly czas obok jeziora Ohrydzkiego, widoki byly przepiekne. Od granicy do najblizszego miasteczka w Albanii bylo 6km. Przez jakis czas szlismy z pewnym Belgiem, ktory byl bardzo podeksytowany faktem, ze przeszedl do "trzeciego swiata" i wlasciwie tylko dlatego znalazl sie w Albanii. Skrecil jednak do najblizszego pubu; mial wrocic jeszcze tego samego dnia do Ohrydu, by pochwalic sie znajomym, czego "dokonal"... Uszlismy juz spory kawal, gdy zatrzymal sie pierwszy samochod na pustej drodze i zawiozl nas do miasteczka. Juz tam zobaczylismy albanski folklor - blotniste drogi, piekne gory dookola, ale takze wszechogarniajaca bieda. A z biedy ludzie moga robic rozne dziwne i zle rzeczy. Nie chcielismy tam spędzić nocy, bo autentycznie zaczelismy sie bac. Zdecydowalismy sie na platny tranzyt przez caly kraj, byle by tam tylko nie nocowac. W Tiranie zabawilismy jakies 40 min, po czym zlapalismy kolejny busik. Mielismy wrazenie, ze wszyscy chca nas uzyc, a dokladniej - naszych pieniedzy. Umawiasz sie z kierowca, ze tyle a tyle mozesz mu zaplacic za dany odcinek drogi, a potem okazuje sie, ze chce dwa razy wiecej. Banany kosztowaly w przeliczeniu niecale 1Euro/kg, a Marcin zaplacil tyle za 2... sztuki bananow. Na koncu jakas kobieta pomogla nam znalezc transport w strone granicy czarnogorskiej, do ktorej nic nie jezdzilo, po czym zazyczyla sobie 10 Euro zaplaty... Sam kraj jest przepiekny, zewszad otoczony gorami, ma naprawde ogromny potencjal. Ten potencjal jednak nigdy nie zostal wykorzystany. Tranzyt zajal nam caly dzien. Pod wieczor bylismy w trzecim w tym dniu kraju - Czarnogorze. Tam, na granicy, spotkalismy czworke Polakow - studentow medycyny (autostopowiczow jak my), z ktorymi juz stopem dojechalismy do Podgoricy. Z dworca kolejowego w Podgoricy, na ktory nas podwieziono, szlismy pare km. Zrobilo sie juz ciemno, gdy znalezlismy laczke, na ktorej - po raz pierwszy na tym wyjezdzie - rozbilismy namiot. Cale szczescie, bo w nocy padalo. No i czulismy sie bezpieczniej...

ENGLISH:

From Ohrid we took a bus to the Albanian boarder (110 Denars=2 Euros/2 people) and we walked through both of the boarders. Firstly though we had to wait at the bus station for an hour, because Bogna-the-very-clever-one didn`t realize that when crossing the Greek-Macedonian boarder, we`d changed the time zone and for almost 3 days we had lived "1 hour earlier" than others. The road to Albania was leading right next to the Ohrid lake for most of the time, the views were wonderful. From the boarder to the nearest town in Albania there was a distance of 6km. For a little while we were walking towards the town with a certain Belgian guy, that was truly excited about the fact that he passed the "third world" curtain and actually only because of this fact he found himself in Albania. He turned towards the nearest pub though; the guy was supposed to be back in Ohrid on the same day, in order to tell his friends what he`d "achieved"... We had walked a pretty long distance when the first car that was driving in that empty road stopped for us and took to the town. And there I can tell we saw an actual Albanian folklore - muddy roads, beautiful mountains surrounding the place, but also all-embracing poverty. And because of the poverty people can do variety of weird and bad things. We did not want to stay overnight there, as we truly started to be scared. We decided to use a payable transport, all across the country, just not to spend a night there. We spent like 40 min in Tirana there and afterwards we took another mini bus. We had this weird impression that everyone wanted to use us, or rather our money. You make a deal with a driver and tell him how much you can pay him for a certain distance and then, at the end of the journey he wants you to pay twice as much. Bananas cost 1Euro/kg and Marcin had to pay 1 Euro for... just two bananas. Eventually a certain woman helped us out with finding a transportation to the boarder with Montenegro and then she asked us to pay 10 Euros for the "service"... The country itself is beautiful, surrounded by mountains, it has a huge potential. The potential though has never been used. The transit took us all day long. In the evening we were in a third country on that day - Montenegro. At the boarder there we met 4 Polish students of medicine (also hitchhikers) and we hitchhiked with them to the town of Podgorica. We had to walk a couple of km from the railway station in Podgorica where we were dropped off. It was already dark when we found a meadow where we pitched our tent - for the first time on that trip. Smart of us, it was raining at night. And we felt safer as well...
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