The Colourful Revolution

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One of the statue lined foot bridges over the River Vardar
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Government buildings
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Another statue lined bridge.

(If you double click on pictures, you get them nice and big) It’s Easter Sunday and the city seems quite quiet. It may not be by tomorrow or even tonight. But I decided to venture out and see what kind of damage had been done throughout the town. The government buildings are primarily Neo-clasical. The statues and beautification of the city is part of a project called Skopje 2014. Here are some pictures to peruse.

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Looking down the River Vardar towards city center and the site of many of the demonstrations
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Warrior on a horse or as we lovingly refer to him–Big Al.
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The base of Big Al. Look at the lion’s eye. You might even be able to see the private parts of the lion next to him are painted bright red.
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Truly a mess!
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The base of the triumphal arch-obverse side
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The street side of the arch
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Another view of the arch
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It says VMRO Nevermore. VMRO is the current ruling party.
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Lovingly called Perseus in underpants. Now defaced along with the monument to the war dead behind him.
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One of the four lions which guard the main bridge over the River Vardar. They are all similarly defaced.
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My Easter Egg and Easter wine! (I love the wine glasses they use in restaurants here!
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The best gnocchi I have ever eaten!

But it’s Easter and that calls for a bit of a celebration. So after I took pictures, I decided to try a new restaurant in the city center. It’s a lovely Italian restaurant called La Terrazza. And oh, my goodness what a treat it was! I ordered some wine (I know it was early but I certainly wasn’t going to get any later in the day so I may as well seize opportunities when they present themselves.) I ordered gnocchi with a red sauce. The gnocchi was piping hot and so tender it almost melted in your mouth. The red sauce – oh, I thought I had died and gone to heaven or somewhere similar. Lots and lots of fresh garlic and basil in it. (I get no onions, garlic or basil at home.) I  have a new favorite restaurant. I just have to hope they don’t make the city center off limits 24/7. After I  ordered my meal, I was presented with a red Easter egg. Red eggs are an orthodox tradition and are symbolic of the blood that was shed for sinners. I’m supposed to keep it all year and it will bring me good luck. Don’t know about keeping an egg for a year. Might get smelly!

But then it was back to the village and there was a bit of excitement on the ride home. It seems five young men (about 16-25 years old) got on the bus without paying their fare (people do it all the time) and the bus inspectors happened to be on this bus. They asked to see their tickets. Oops–no ticket. Let’s go boys. We are putting you off the bus. They refused. So they called the police and they boarded the bus and forced them off the bus. One young man tried to convince them that he didn’t speak Macedonian–only Shqip. Didn’t work. Even I understood the conversation interchange.  As the bus pulled out, the police were writing tickets. All I could think of was a phrase my father used to use–taking names and kicking asses. I have no idea what  happened to these guys but I think you can imagine they won’t pull that stunt any time again soon.

So now it is back to my nice quiet existence. Planning for the end of the school year. Hard to believe it is almost over.

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Eileen

A 60 something woman who has run off to faraway places with the Peace Corps.

3 thoughts on “The Colourful Revolution”

  1. Another good Italian restaurant to go to in Skopje. There are some really good places to eat in Macedonia and none of them are expensive. Too bad about all the paint being thrown on the buildings and art works. That will take a lot of money to clean and will likely detour tourism.

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