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Tuesday, 9 July 2013


Our stay at the Gjirokastra Hotel was very pleasant. A family run hotel with the children and grand children speaking good English (among other languages). It was a slightly different kettle of fish when dealing with the older members of the family. We decided to stay at the hotel for a meal on our first night. There was no menu ie something to point at, so trying to communicate what we wanted was I did hear "pork" and "lamb" mentioned but our efforts in pursuing an order were unsuccessful. Then our host suggested "You want something to eat", probably in exasperation. Yes, we'll have "something eat" x2 and no olives please. Off she trotted and 20 mins later came back with "something to eat", which, although it remained anonymous, was very nice. This was yet another occasion where we met people and despite the language barrier, who fall over backwards to ensure your every need is met.
Time to move on and to the coast.

 Enroute we found this beautiful natural spring called 'The Blue Eye" which I'm sure you will agree is

Now I can't remember where I got the co-ordinates for our last campsite in Albania (but I didn't tell the co-pilot). So when we turned off the main road down a dirt track, past peoples gardens and loads of half built houses there was a lot of negativity in the cab!! After a few twists and turns we landed outside Ksamil Caravan Camping. Another Albanian home that has turned its front and back yard into a campsite. The owner met us at the gate showed us round the emaculate shower and toilet facilities and before we had committed to staying, he insisted we sit in the shade and have an iced coffee. That sold it to us. We found our spot and spent a very pleasant two nights listening to the owners unending admiration for everything that England had done for Albania in the second world war. We would have loved to have stayed.

The pictures below show what happens when a greedy banker risks the wealth of the country for their next dodgy deal and they get caught. No threats to 'clamp down jolly hard on their bonuses' or force them to retire with great big fat pensions.. oh no. They tear down their house!!

These house construction have been pulled down by the government because the people who put them up were naughty! The place is littered with them (as England is littered with dodgy bankers).
There were no building regs here a few years ago and the Government announced the building had to stop so gave a two month window, saying at the end of the two months arial photos would be taken and very building constructed on the photo would get planning permission and thereafter there would be strict laws. This kind of back fired and every blade of grass was built on in two months to qualify for the permission! Except some kept going. So the Government turned up and halted building as you see here.

And then we went to...................................................................

.............................................................the beach where there was some more feedback from the Government on planning regs.