Saturday is a play day! It was raining when we woke up! A bit of trouble falling asleep last night as a traveling dance troup of mostly young people arrived at the hotel in the late afternoon. NOISY!!!
It takes about 30-40 minutes to get to the border of Bulgaria from Strumica. 4 check points in which passports were carefully scrutinized but strangely it did not feel intimidating in the least.
We saw a lot of goat herders and sheep herders in the fields. We saw families working the fields. passed a lot of horse drawn carts. Very rural and agricultural as is Strumica.
By the time we arrived in the town of Petrik (sic) the sun was shining and it was lunch time! We found parking and with Tony leading the way, found a delightful restaurant to dine in. Tony ordered for us and we feasted! First plates of french fries with feta cheese melted on them, and sauted mushrooms also sprinkled with cheese. two huge platters of salad type items: tomatoes, cucumbers, roasted red peppers, eggplant, olives, cole slaw, lettuce, and several types of cheese (goat, sheep)
then the main course: roasted lamb served with rosemary sprinkled roasted potatoes. We were stuffed! it was all so good! (all of our meals have been good experiences)
After lunch we broke off in small groups and wandered around the town. Being Saturday it was open market day so lots of street vendors. One thing I can't get used to: how attentive the shop keepers or employees are! We are so ignored in the states when we shop. here is you look more than 3 seconds at an item or pick something up, the employees are right there to sell to you.
We had agreed to meet up by 5 but at 4 we had all pretty much seen enough and since we were all back together we went for coffee and enjoyed the outside seating at a cafe. Euro-techno music blared around us and we just sipped our cappuccinos and macchiatos and people watched.
At 5 we were back in the van and headed for the border. Still can't believe we got to visit another country!! This and the time spent in Dusseldorf were certainly serendipitous!
Back inside Macedonia, we went to Bosco to see a waterfall. I find this interesting because when we have company visit us we take them to see Nooksack Falls. the waterfall was simply beautiful and we could have waded right in and stood under it if it had been a warmer day-- and we had our swimsuits!
After leaving the waterfall Tony drove us back to the hotel. Some of the group headed back to downtown as there was some sort of festival going on (which is why the dance troupe was here) the rest of is opted for a quieter evening.... except as I write this there is another large band playing in the middle of the street about a block away and they are a happy marching band! Wow, the excitement just never stops!