Busy week in Slovenia!

Trip Start Sep 03, 2011
Trip End Ongoing

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Where I stayed
Jana's house
Barbara's house

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Monday, October 24, 2011

I want to thank everyone for reading my blog and leaving the great comments. When writing these blogs it helps tremendously knowing that you are all reading and enjoying them.
I left Austria a week ago on Sunday the 16th of October and traveled 3 hours by bus to Maribor, Slovenia. I had no plans of going to Maribor but the bus did not go all the way to the capital city of Ljubljana. I arrived in Maribor around 9:30 at night having no idea where I was going to stay so I walked around the mountain town in the 35 degree cold weather in search of a hostel. Finally around 10:30 I located Lollipop hostel for 20 euro ($27.49 US) a night. The price was a little high but it wasn't getting any warmer outside and the lady told me she wasn't expecting any one that late and I was the only guest staying there so it made it nice to have the place to myself. Maribor was a nice ski resort town and I enjoyed spending the next day there but I was on a mission to meet up with some friends that I had met when I was in Ireland. Barbara and Jana each lived in smaller villages about thirty minutes away from Ljubljana. Jana invited me to stay at her house in Ziri so she picked me up at the train station that evening then we went to Barbara's family owned restaurant Gric. Gric was the only restaurant in their small 500 hillbilly village of Sentjost and if you are ever in Slovenia you have to go and tell them I sent you. The food and schnapps is amazing and all the people that work and run it are even more amazing than the food. Mitsa made us 3 wonderful pizzas and served us an ice cold Union beer which is probably one of the best beers I have ever had. Jana and I then went on to Ziri to her parents house. We woke up the next morning and Jana drove me all over the northwestern region. We headed through the Soca Valley alongside the beautiful light green Soca River until we came to the high Slovenian Alps mountain pass which took us over to the secluded Bled Lake surrounded with beautiful mountains, a castle over looking the lake and a lonely church on an island in the middle of the lake. Such an amazing site to see. The next day Barbara's sister Lucija joined us as we toured the Postojna Caves which are very similar to the Carlsbad Caverns except it had a bridge the tour guide thought was a very important part of the cave for some reason. He mentioned how we were coming to the bridge and how this was the bridge and how we were going to cross the bridge in a minute and now we will be crossing the bridge and now we are crossing the bridge! Haha he pointed out some very obvious facts about "the bridge". I am not sure if he didn't know much English or just didn't know anything about the cave because the only other information I remember hearing was the difference between a stalagmite and a stalactite. He should have been more like Lucija. When she didn't know what to say in English or how to say it she would just say in a real sweet and calm voice "ICE CREAM!!" it was great and made me laugh every time! After the cave we drove to the coast of Slovenia and had some coffee and ice cream in honor of Lucija. We then drove drove up into the "Tuscany" of Slovenia which was incredible. The lush green mountains were covered with scattered grape vineyards, small villages and wineries over every other hill. It was a little after dark when we decided to have some dinner and wine at Lusija's winery of choice. The one she chose was great and I wish I could remember the name but there were many to choose from. It's not really about the name of the place or what they serve, it is more about what happens while enjoying the wine, food and company of others in the restaurant. We were accompanied by four older Italian men sitting at the table across from us. One of the men struck conversation with me asking where we were from and so forth. One of the other men did not believe me and made a bet with the other three that because of my beard and Slovenian company I had to be from Austria. He obviously lost the bet seeing how I am definitely a US citizen and had to buy us a bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon which made the place the perfect choice! The following day it started snowing early in the morning, it was beautiful. Jana and I picked up one of her friends and headed to Gric restaurant for lunch and had a few drinks with everyone while it continued to snow. Jana had to take her friend back home and I decided to hang out at the restaurant and catch a ride later but the snow never let up and nobody was able to drive anywhere! I was stuck at the restaurant with lots of great friends, food and wine! They told me the best way to get down the hill to Barbara's house was to get a large garbage sack, sit on it and slide down the snow covered hill. I jumped off the side of the hill like an idiot and missed my sack and sank straight to the bottom of the snow!! Covered in snow I climbed back aboard my hillbilly sled and didn't move an inch so one of my friends began to push and I slid nice and smooth for about ten feet and stopped again. It was pointless I was not going anywhere, the snow was too soft. We got to the house and had snacks and more wine sitting by the fire...it was great. On Saturday night my friends took me to a concert in one of the small villages in the area. They told me it was kind of like a hillbilly barn dance so I thought I had an idea of what to expect, knowing my background and all. When we arrived I saw the village fire station with lots of people standing outside visiting and hanging out and shortly after they told me the concert was in the upstairs part of the fire station. I was very surprised because this was definitely not what I had expected at all but we had a blast and the hillbilly rock concert was awesome at the fire station was awesome!
My friends in Slovenia are amazing, I look forward to seeing them again someday in the future. They always made sure I was not hungry and definitely kept me from dying of thirst! I hope some of you that are reading this get a chance to meet them someday because they will accept you with open arms and lots of love.
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Heather on

Oh how I wish I could have seen you sink in the snow...I might have laughed. A lot.

Slovenia is GORGEOUS! Trav and I loved all the pics on FB!

Bill and Pam on

You are definitely seeing the world. How wonderful to meet people who are so friendly and welcoming. They would fit right in here:) Take care. Love the pictures. They make your adventure so much more real. Love, Bill and Pam

Nanci Boyd on

What an awesome experience!! They all sound like incredible people. Fabulous pictures!

Suz on

What a great experience! I'm sure the wine didn't make the trip down the hill any easier but probably a little more fun! It was definitely fun to read about! When Jonathan read this he said it just kind of makes you want to get up and go there. We love reading your posts, especially the pictures (neither one of us are on FB so we are glad to get to see them here)! Keep enjoying!!

Teisha O'Brian on

Love reading your stories, always puts a smile on my face!! Love to read about all of the wonderful friends you are meeting and how welcoming they are. Beautiful pictures!! You are one lucky guy to get to meet and see all of the wonderful places Jesus has created for us! Blessing to you

Ron Humphrey on

Sounds like you're having the time of your life. I'm glad you're getting to live your dream. Yee Haa!!! Have a great time!!

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