(All photos © Sean D Sorrentino, 2012)

Thursday, May 31, 2012

A quiet day in the Capitol

Ljubljana. It helps to know that in Slovene, the “J” actually makes a “Y” sound. I still can’t pronounce it correctly, but everyone knows what I am saying so it’s close enough. Ljubljana is a fairly big city, in what looks like a big bowl between lots of hills. It becomes really apparent how much of a valley it is when you climb to the top of the castle tower.

I really liked Ljubljana when I was here 12 years ago. It seemed like there are more people now and lots more traffic. I have no idea if that’s true, but it feels that way. It also might be that after Lipica, Koper, and Predjama, Ljubljana looks like New York City. We have been out in the countryside for almost a week, so it might be just that my expectations have shifted.

Ljubljana seems crazy about dragons. You can’t see it in the photo of the castle, but the flag flying from the tower has a castle sitting on a hill, with a dragon on top. They also use that shield on all their license plates. They have four of them guarding “Dragon Bridge.”

Mostly, however, today was a day for us to try to recuperate from being on the go for almost a week now. Travel does get stressful because you don’t know where you are sleeping the next day. You’d be surprised how that wears on you. We decided to go back early to the pension where we are staying and put our feet up.

Once again, the restaurant attached to the pension did their best to stuff us full of very good food. I don’t think I will be losing weight on this trip.

Federal Trade Commission Disclaimer:
These blog entries reflect my personal opinions about the locations The Wife and I visited during our travels. I have not received money, freebies, or any other inducements to provide positive coverage of anyone, anywhere, or anything. In fact, no one on this trip knew or had any reason to know that I am a blogger. I do not work for the Tourist Boards of any country, nor am I employed in the travel industry in any way.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Sometimes I really hate people

Don’t ever let people tell you that Americans are badly behaved overseas. They might be, but they are certainly no worse than anyone else.

We spent a leisurely morning escaping from Piran. It was a bit of a hassle transferring everything to the car, using the free parking ticket, and then returning that ticket. We finally made it out the door and were on our way to Postjna Caves. These caves are bigger, and in many ways more impressive than the Škocjan Caves we went to yesterday. The problem is that they are much more popular and much easier to get around in. The pains of walking 3 kilometers over rough ground, climbing up and down stairs, with nothing to help you get along means that many people don’t even try. Postojna Cave has its own electric railroad. Apparently nothing attracts idiots like an easy cave exploration.

I pointed out yesterday that the caves do not allow photography. They are especially against flash photography. Let’s face it. None of us have professional equipment and tripods so that we can take long exposure photos. That means that none of our cameras are really going to be effective in the caves. The flash on your average camera is designed to work out to about 12 to 15 feet. Beyond that all you are doing is annoying people. I’m trying to see the neat formations in the rock and you’re flashing me in the eyes with your idiot camera. What was really funny was how people were trying to be “covert” in their photography. As if it was possible to cover the fact that the screen on the back was almost bright enough to read by. They just couldn’t understand how people were figuring out that they were taking photos. The one dude with running a pretty expensive looking SLR and using the red-eye flash? Dude, can you think of a better way to prove to everyone that you have absolutely no idea how to operate a camera? We were in the English language tour group, so this means everyone who was not Slovene, German, or Italian ended up with us. From the Asian dudes who were doing their best to live up to the camera happy stereotypes to the jerk woman who was trying to out-German the Germans with her nasty attitude, we were surrounded by fools and idiots. They probably didn’t like me either. There are times that I think it should be legal to push one of them over a railing as a warning to the rest.

The cave was pretty though. It was really flat and easy going. The train pulls you through the mouth of the cave about 2 km back to the walking tour. Then you stand around waiting for the next trainload before the tour starts. They separate you into language groups, and off you go. It’s a steep climb up to the top of the “mountain” and then it’s mostly downhill from there. The path is paved with what looks like the same non skid stuff that Disneyland uses on their ride pathways. The railings are sturdy enough that it would be difficult to avoid accusations when you claimed that a particularly annoying idiot fell over those rails. Honestly, anyone who can walk without a cane or walker should be able to do this tour. And really, if you can get beyond the total lack of respect many people show for the natural resource, you will really enjoy the beauty of it.

The Wife and I reflected on the different way of dealing with rules. In America, we expect that the rules will be uniform, apply to everyone at all times, and be enforced. Otherwise they shouldn’t have the rule at all. We felt that if they weren’t going to deal with the photography and the flashes, then they should just be honest and take down the no-photography sign. Maybe they just got tired of trying and decided to ignore it.

We emerged from the cave and immediately hopped into the car for the long 9 Kilometer journey to Predjama Castle. Why did we decide to go there?

That’s why.

I’m not sure that there is much truth to a lot of the “artifacts” that they show, but no matter, the castle is really cool. I’m just glad I wasn’t the guy who had to hang on the edge of the cliff and lay the foundation stones. I’m perfectly happy to stand on the battlements and drop stones on people, but I’m not hanging off the edge and building the place.

We ate lunch at the restaurant at the base of the castle. We both had venison. Mmmm.

We ran into our first real difficulty of the trip on our run into Ljubljana, the capitol city of Slovenia. We were trying to get to the Slovene Language for Tourists class that the tourist board runs on Wednesday at 5pm, but we got caught in traffic and I programmed the wrong location into the GPS. Then we found out that not a single hotel in central Ljubljana has a room for rent. It appears that there is some sort of Economics convention in town. They demonstrated the Supply and Demand principle admirably.

We finally begged the guy at the Tourist Information Center to call around for us and find us a room. We are in a little “pension” somewhere west of the city. It’s pretty nice, thought the towels are like sandpaper. The restaurant is great and the waiter was even better. I was stressed out, pissed off, and fearing that I was going to have to sleep in the car. Now I have a bed calling my name.

Federal Trade Commission Disclaimer:
These blog entries reflect my personal opinions about the locations The Wife and I visited during our travels. I have not received money, freebies, or any other inducements to provide positive coverage of anyone, anywhere, or anything. In fact, no one on this trip knew or had any reason to know that I am a blogger. I do not work for the Tourist Boards of any country, nor am I employed in the travel industry in any way.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

From the darkness into the light

The first order of business today was to get ourselves to Škocjan Caves by the 10 am start of the first tour. Since it was a 20 minute drive to the caves from our hotel, you can see I am keeping to my plan of not working too hard on my vacation. We ended up leaving the hotel at 8:30 am simply because there was nothing left to do. We had eaten breakfast and checked out of the hotel, so we might as well go straight to the caves and just kill time until the tour.

We arrived at the cave at 9am, with plenty of time to kick our heels and wait. This area of Slovenia is one big limestone plateau. That means that water hitting the limestone basically erodes it all over the place. I don’t know all the chemistry, but basically the water dissolves the limestone, leaving a bowl. This makes more water collect in the bowl, dissolving more limestone. The water leaks out of the bottom of the bowl, so you don’t just get a lake. You end up getting a big random hole in the ground. Around Lipica there were lots of random holes in the ground with trees growing in them.

In the case of the Škocjan caves, there is a river that runs underneath the ground from here at the start of the caves all the way down to near Trieste, Italy. The river actually runs underground further than it does above ground. This, plus water leaking in from the surface, carved out a beautiful series of caves that are really difficult to describe. Photography is strictly forbidden, and basically impossible without specialized equipment. It really was very pretty. It would have been nice to go in a smaller group. We had about 50 people, and they wouldn’t shut up. I’d rather be quiet and just look at the cave, but I understand that it’s difficult for humans to keep quiet in a group.

Our group was led by a lady that spoke both English and German. We only had one Italian couple so she kept them at the front and just explained things to them. All the Slovenes went in their own group, so our guide switched back and forth between English and German, sometimes starting with one and sometimes starting with the other. We only took the “Classic” tour. This is basically the same tour given since the 1930’s. There was a previous route that was much closer to the river back before the original bridge collapsed in the ‘30’s, but looking at the route up the rock face, I wouldn’t want to try it. I especially wouldn’t want to try it with a group of 50 people who were mostly older than me. If you fall off and land in the river, I don’t think they would bother to try fishing your body out. They’d probably just wait until you came out in Italy.

The trip isn’t arduous, exactly, but it isn’t easy either. You should be able to hike 3 kilometers over rough terrain. Figure that you should be able to start at the top of a 20 story building, climb down the stairs, walk a mile or so, and then climb back up the stairs. It’s not really a trip for the very young. There were some 50-60 plus people there, but you should judge your own fitness level before you try. Once you get down, it’s a long way back up. It’s worth it, though.

After the cave, we drove down to Koper. Have I pointed out that Slovenia is about as big as the state of Connecticut? That means that not many places are very far away. The original plan was to drive straight to Piran, but since it was only 12:30 pm, we could easily see that medieval core of Koper along the way. When I was in the Navy, my ship pulled into Koper. The problem is that the ship’s bus took us to Portoroz instead of showing us anything of Koper, so really I haven’t ever seen the town before. It was certainly worth the two hours we spent. Parking was 1 Euro per hour, first hour free. We went up to Titov Trg (Trg means “square”) and looked at the old buildings. Pretty interesting.

Then we wandered around looking for lunch. We found a nice restaurant that offered quite a few options, but being boring we both had pizza. It was cheap and good. Then more wandering around the square. In my historical re-enactment group I spend most of my time working with heraldry. The people in Koper were kind enough to leave lots of heraldic stuff around for me to look at. I’ve taken a few pictures so that I can use it later as proof that certain heraldic things were done. Like this one. It looks like three “bends” that are hollowed out in the middle, showing the background. I’ve never seen this done before.

After our two hours ran out, we drove off to Piran. Piran is an isthmus that sticks out into the Adriatic Sea. It is apparently named after the Greek word for fire, Pyr. That’s because the point of land had an old signal fire. Trust me when I say that running into a sharp point of land with your ship ruins your whole day. The solution, of course, is to mark that point of land. Lacking such modern conveniences as the electric signal light, they just lit a fire. Thus the name of this really excellent little city.

We just came from Venice yesterday, and this section of the world was ruled by Venice for a lot of it’s history. You can see that in the architecture and the way they seem to like to stick Venice’s lion on everything. They weren’t subtle back then any more than we are now. Piran is an interesting little town that I imagine must be a total circus in the height of summer. Right now it’s pretty quiet. That makes it perfect for us.

We had dinner (twice) and drinks (I forget how many times) and just wandered around the town. The central square is interesting

The lighthouse/church is interesting

And even prettier after the sun starts to go down.

Piran is a medieval city, so they didn’t consider the difficulty of driving a car in a town that has streets narrow enough to touch both walls. This means you have to park outside town. The Fornace car park costs you $15 a day, but they have a free bus that takes you to the central square. Everything in the town is easily accessable by foot from there. The biggest problem you will run into is that the streets are so small and the signs so hard to find that you will have a bit of trouble at first trying to navigate. Press on, the city is so small that you will eventually figure it out. We stayed in Val Hostel, which is a pretty inexpensive place closer to the point of Piran than to the central square. Neither will take you more than 5 minutes to walk to. Part of the room rent is that the owner will validate our parking, so we don’t have to pay for it. Don’t worry. Piran got it’s money back on us buying drinks. We’ve had quite a time.

Federal Trade Commission Disclaimer:
These blog entries reflect my personal opinions about the locations The Wife and I visited during our travels. I have not received money, freebies, or any other inducements to provide positive coverage of anyone, anywhere, or anything. In fact, no one on this trip knew or had any reason to know that I am a blogger. I do not work for the Tourist Boards of any country, nor am I employed in the travel industry in any way.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Masks and mayhem

Today was Venice for us. The wife insisted that we go to Venice. I’ve been to Venice before and I didn’t really like it. It felt too claustrophobic to me. Too many people jammed into too little space, combined with the buildings way too close. It’s almost impossible to take a decent photo of anything because you can’t get far enough away to fit everything in.

You know, I’m glad she insisted. I had a pretty good time. Maybe I didn’t have the right person with me last time. Of course, I was in the Navy last time and pretty much everyone is the wrong person compared to having your wife with you.

Here’s the obligatory photo of St. Marks Square.

It’s packed as always. What I don’t understand is why everyone is crushed into the one end, leaving the end away from the Doge’s palace almost empty by comparison. You need to get all the way on this end to take a decent photo. I still would have liked to be up a couple of stories so that I could take the shot flat instead of pointing up. Maybe when I’m rich and can afford to spend a week or two in Venice in the off season I will take the time to get the necessary permissions.

Here’s a gondola. No we didn’t ride one.

I enjoyed riding around in the “Vaporetti.” That’s the name for the water buses. Parking was simple, if expensive, at Trochetto. You just search for Trochetto in your GPS, follow the directions, and go to the big building with the enormous blue “P” on the side. It’s 21 Euros per 24 hours of parking, and you have quick access to the Vaporetti. The 12 hour pass on all Venetian public transport is 16 Euros. Get this. It’s 6.5 for a one hour pass, which will get you one way to wherever you need to go, but then you’re stuck. It’s another 6.5 Euros back. Pay the extra and then ride all over the place all day. You get to see all the best stuff, and you get to sit down while you ride. The Grand Canal was pretty cool.

Then The Wife found a mask. Actually she found a whole shop full of masks. Now The Wife  isn’t much into useless stuff. I'm the one who likes useless stuff. She usually wants stuff that is functional. She happily walked past literally hundreds of other mask shops without batting an eye. Then she stopped and looked into a window and started admiring one particular mask. The clerk, who was probably bored, ran out to tell us about his masks. All hand made, certified from Venice, family owned and operated shop, yada, yada, yada. The masks were stunning. I have no idea if they were better or worse quality than any other masks, but I thought that they were fabulous. She finally settled on the mask on the left. Except she wanted it painted like the one on the right. He’s going to ship it to us.

He seems so serious in this photo, but he was a really nice guy. You could tell he was proud of his family's work. If you are in Venice, you’re probably looking at the masks anyway. Stop by and say hi to Olivo at his shop. La Gioia 2, Castello, 5618 – Salida San Lio – 30122 Venice

We decided that we wanted to see some of the places besides Campo San Marco and the Rialto Bridge, so we hopped the Vaporetto again and rode it all the way out to Lido. That’s the beach. It was much quieter than the well traveled path between St. Marks and the Rialto. You could almost see vacationing here. It seemed more like a place to live and less like a tourist attraction. Of course, by that time we were getting tired, so we rode back to St. Marks, changed Vaporetti, and rode back to the Tronchetto parking area, this time by going around rather than going back up the Grand Canal.

I haven’t the slightest idea what this place is, but it was worth a few photos.

All in all it was a good trip. From Lipica, where we are staying one final night, it was 2.5 hours by car to Tronchetto. The tolls were just short of 10 Euros each way, and 21 Euros for the parking. This compares to 25 Euros each way per person via train. Plus you don’t have to mess about with the Trenitalia website trying to get tickets, or muck about in Trieste looking for parking near the train station. The little diesel FIAT Punto seems to get pretty good gas mileage, so I don’t think that gas for the trip set us back much. Surprisingly, driving on the Italian Autostrada was much less of a Mortal Kombat situation than I’ve been led to believe. My only experience in a car in Italy was in a taxi in Naples. The less said about that the better, but I have no desire to ride in an Italian taxi nor go to Naples ever again. Luckily, there were no issues with driving from Lipica to Tronchetto. The speed limit is 130 KPH, and you never get over that. Sometimes a bit slower as people pass the trucks which are limited by law to 90 KPH and must drive in the right lane. There was the occasional person who thought the Autostrada was the Autobahn, but mostly it was like driving on any rural 2 lane US interstate highway.

All in all, a good day.

Update 5-29-12: Olivo came through for us. FedEx just dropped off The Wife's mask.

It's beautiful. The outer part that looks like fabric is actually painted leather. It looks like it was frozen in the wind.

Federal Trade Commission Disclaimer:
These blog entries reflect my personal opinions about the locations The Wife and I visited during our travels. I have not received money, freebies, or any other inducements to provide positive coverage of anyone, anywhere, or anything. In fact, no one on this trip knew or had any reason to know that I am a blogger. I do not work for the Tourist Boards of any country, nor am I employed in the travel industry in any way.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Horses, horses, everywhere

Have you ever taken a vacation where you spent more time running around than you did actually enjoying your trip? Have you come home thinking you need a vacation from your vacation? You’re just going to the wrong places.

Our first full day in Slovenia has been the perfect antidote to the pain of air travel. I know that getting treated like cattle shoved into a trailer is the price we have to pay so that average guys like me can afford to travel, but it does wear you down. Today made it all better.
We got up at a leisurely 8 am and wandered down for the breakfast. Some basic standards were available, including scrambled eggs and some cereal. There were also some sliced lunchmeat and some rolls. Pretty basic. There were also a lot of little packaged things on the rack behind the scrambled eggs. Protip: "pašteta", which comes in a little round foil tear off kind of package is absolutely NOT jam. It’s pâté. I thought it would be rude to open it up and then throw it away, so I spread it on a roll and ate it. It was actually pretty good.
Not Jam!

We had three major things to do today. We had a “visit” to the Lipica Stud Farm, a one hour ride in a horse drawn carriage, and the Sunday riding exhibition. I put “visit” in quotation marks because that’s what they keep saying. In English, a person visits something or someone, but when someone shows you around, it’s more commonly called a “tour.”  I think I could make a pretty decent living proofreading the English language signs, web pages, and brochures here in Slovenia. They all seem to try so hard to make you welcome that I wish I could help them with their English. They’ve certainly helped me with my Slovene. It’s gone from non-existant to barely useful. That’s a tremendous improvement. I am hoping to get all the way up to “not laughably bad” before the end of the trip.

You would think that we would be running around wild trying to do all that in one day, but no. We wandered the grounds of the hotel and their associated golf course for an hour or so, checked email, had lunch, and presented ourselves at the gate to the horse farm at 1pm. The carriage driver was waiting for us. While the ladies were processing all of our tickets, he ran off to get the carriage. Clop, clop, clop and away we went for a long ride around what seemed like the entire place. They have 311 hectares, which works out to about 770 acres.

First we went around the golf course, and then out into the hay fields. I have no idea if it is a good golf course. I’m not a golfer and have no intention of ever becoming one, but it looked nice to my untrained eye. The driver was pretty quiet. Very friendly and he spoke enough English to make it possible to talk with him, but he was perfectly happy to let us just enjoy the ride. He let us know that they also have hunting here. We saw a couple of deer. They were too far away to get a good photo, but they were pretty cool looking, I thought. They have these little electric fences all over the place. They were to keep the wild boar off the golf course. You can hunt those too. He made sure to include a sweet tree lined road. It was all kinds of picturesque.

He brought us back to the start of the farm tour, but they had already started, so he chased them down with the cart (they were just up around the corner and hadn’t really started the tour yet) and dropped us off with our English speaking guide. It was The Wife , me, and 5 older people from England. The tour was all I remembered it being. Horses, and really pretty ones at that. They have almost 350 of them, and only breed the best ones. I’m not a horse person, but I’d be happy with one of these horses. They mostly let the young horses run wild until they turn 4. That’s something I really don’t like about horse racing. They’ve got what are essentially baby horses racing under saddle. This trashes their legs pretty badly. Lipizzaners can work at the highest levels until they are in their 20s, which I am assured is quite old for a horse. They have one here that is 30. He was being used in the exhibition until he was 25 and breeding until he was 28. Letting them fully grow up before working them contributes to their longevity.

After the tour, we went to their riding exhibition. They do the show on Tuesday, Friday, and Sunday at 3pm. It’s pretty much what you would expect. They show you newly started horses, some training exercises, a little carriage driving, a quadrille, and they finish with some of the “airs above the ground.” That’s when they have the horses jump into the air or stand on their back feet. This is pretty difficult for them, and I am assured had military value back in the days when horse cavalry was a primary military arm. I think the star of the show was the guy who was showing the training exercises on long reins. I do some juggling. It’s kind of a joke among jugglers that no one wants to see the really hard stuff. If you juggle 5 or 7 balls, no one is impressed even though it is stupid difficult. Everyone wants to see you eat an apple, which is pretty easy. This guy was juggling 5 balls for a crowd who wanted to see him eat an apple. The Wife, who knows horses, about came out of her seat watching this guy do single lead changes in a collected canter on long reins. (sorry about the horse jargon) I thought it was pretty impressive, but I’ve been to a major dressage show so I knew what I was looking at. I’m not sure the rest of the tourists (mostly French) knew what they were seeing.

After the show we spent another hour or so wandering about the grounds. We ran into another American couple. He was a retired US Navy officer with family from Slovenia. We swapped sea stories, while the ladies talked horses. We got to see more of their horses, including the young ones who’ve really not started turning white yet. (I know, horsey people, they were grey, not white) They look kind of funny. The really well trained, fully grown Lipizzaners look magnificent. The babies look kind of odd.

It’s 6pm, and we’ve not broken a sweat all day. It’s rained a bit, been sunny a bit, and overcast most of the time. It’s about as relaxing as you could hope for. If you’re going to come to Slovenia, flying in via Trieste like we did, this is exactly the place you need to come to recover from the flight.

Federal Trade Commission Disclaimer:
These blog entries reflect my personal opinions about the locations The Wife and I visited during our travels. I have not received money, freebies, or any other inducements to provide positive coverage of anyone, anywhere, or anything. In fact, no one on this trip knew or had any reason to know that I am a blogger. I do not work for the Tourist Boards of any country, nor am I employed in the travel industry in any way.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Getting there is none of the fun

Modern travel by plane is not easy. You get shoved into a metal tube with far too many other people, and expected to suffer for the 8 hours it takes to fly across the Atlantic ocean. I’m sure glad right now that I didn’t decide to go to New Zealand. Maybe someday when I can afford a First Class seat.

It’s always the same with traveling. First you make all the reservations for the plane and the car, and in my case, for the first hotel. You’re all excited for a couple of weeks, but eventually it starts to feel like your vacation will never arrive. 6 more weeks. Then 5. And those final weeks drag on and on. Then all of a sudden you’re two days out, you’re not sure you’ve done everything you need to do, and panic sets in. The Wife hates travel. She loves vacation, but flying just does her in. If you’re not getting probulated by the Junior G-Man squad, you’re getting stuffed into seats designed for 5’6”, 110 lb high school cheerleaders. Neither The Wife nor I actually fit in those seats.

What’s worse is that The Wife gets terribly motion sick. I might get a little upset if the guy started flying his plane like he was trying out to be the pilot of the Vomit Comet but The Wife can’t even read a book in the car. When we went on our honeymoon in Alaska, we took a “cruise” in Seward. Not one of those horrible giant ships with bad food and worse Germans, (read all three!) but a “Wildlife” cruise. I picked. I was in the Navy. I picked the one that lasted longest and had the best food. It was all day and had all you can eat prime rib and salmon. Hey, if you’re going to drive me around in an Alaskan fjord freezing and getting rained on, I’m going to have a decent lunch. I ate like a pig and enjoyed the hell out of myself. The Wife turned green. I think she tried to eat. Luckily we saw every kind of animal you could name. Puffin, sea otters, killer whales, so many bald eagles that we kind of got bored of them. We even saw a mother and baby humpback whale pair. The Wife will endure a lot to see that kind of wildlife. Dramamine or Bonine, or whatever she took kept her from barfing on the sea otter as we went by, but it didn’t make her feel good about the process. For this trip we used something better. Scopolamine patches. She reports no nausea at all. She ate well the whole flight. If you get seasick, ask your doctor about it.

Speaking of eating well, I think that Lufthansa is trying to do their part to apologize for the unpleasantness towards Jews during WWII. The Wife won’t eat pork. For a person who spent a lot of time working on a high class pork farm and getting paid in pork, it’s an odd food restriction. She’s not allergic, but she took a class on animal parasites when she was in college and hasn’t eating pig products since. The easiest way to get pork free meals on a plane is to request a kosher meal. Lufthansa kosher meals are much better than the run of the mill economy class meals. Like, REALLY a lot better. Just a tip.

In flight I watched probably the most pointless action movie ever, Haywire. Seriously, skip it. How do you take a hot chick, put her in a shoot-em-up, punch-em-out and make such a piece of garbage? Has Steven Soderbergh become too big to edit?

Another strange thing was Munich Airport. You’ve seen the stupid shops that they have in American airports, right? It looks like they tried to graft a couple of stores on to an airport? Not Munich. They have built a full blown American style mall. Since they don’t have cars at this mall, they’ve devoted the parking lot to jets. It feels like you’re hopping a plane between J Crew and Hot Topic.

We endured and eventually emerged triumphant in the long, long flight from Raleigh to Trieste, Italy. They even managed to get our luggage here. We got the car, powered up the pre-programmed GPS and zoomed straight in to our destination. Tomorrow is going to be awesome.

Oh, yeah. In case you didn’t know, horse tastes good. Apparently horse is something that the Slovenes like to eat. I’m guessing that no one really raises horses specifically to eat, so we must have gotten the slow learners from somewhere. I came here to Slovenia 12 years ago when I was in the Navy. When I was here in Lipica last time we went to the local train station in Divača to go back to the capital city. Here’s an old steam train they have parked at the station.

The plate on it says No. 4840, 1928, Wein.

There was a little hole in the wall café across the street from the train station that served the best food. I wanted to go back. I couldn’t find it today so we went back towards Lipica and stopped in a gostilna. They served lots of stuff, including horse. The place is called Gostilna Prunk. The server was awesome. He helped us pronounce everything, and was just happy as could be that we were trying to use Slovene. I had about half a glass of the local wine, and after dinner he gave us a little after dinner drink. I only had a taste, because I am driving. Drunk driving in a foreign country has to be a class A jerk maneuver. This after dinner drink was fantastic. I bought a bottle, but I don’t think it’s going to make it home. “Teranov Liker” it’s called. It’s a sweet berry tasting liqueur. If you get a chance, grab some.

Tomorrow, all day on the Lipica Stud Farm. Including a carriage ride.

Federal Trade Commission Disclaimer:
These blog entries reflect my personal opinions about the locations The Wife and I visited during our travels. I have not received money, freebies, or any other inducements to provide positive coverage of anyone, anywhere, or anything. In fact, no one on this trip knew or had any reason to know that I am a blogger. I do not work for the Tourist Boards of any country, nor am I employed in the travel industry in any way.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Coming Soon!

Coming soon! The true to life adventures of Sean and The Wife on their two week tour of Europe.

(Click to enlarge)

We mostly concentrated on Slovenia. Places visited

The blog posts will come out starting Saturday the 26th. Each post is published 3 weeks after the events described. This was done so that I wasn't publicizing the fact that my house was unoccupied.

The Wife will remain nameless and will not appear in any photos out of respect for her wish to remain anonymous. And she threatened to make me cook all my own dinners if I posted photos of her online.
Federal Trade Commission Disclaimer:

These blog entries reflect my personal opinions about the locations The Wife and I visited during our travels. I have not received money, freebies, or any other inducements to provide positive coverage of anyone, anywhere, or anything. In fact, no one on this trip knew or had any reason to know that I am a blogger. I do not work for the Tourist Boards of any country, nor am I employed in the travel industry in any way.