18 December 2012


Guess it went a bit personal lately. For anyone, who feels bored or disappointed, I'm terribly sorry.
I guess this blog will change the focus a bit.
The time of bigger or smaller travels every one and the half month is over, the whirl is gone or at least slowed down a lot. And although I plan some travels in following months, either I know where I will go, or plans are too fragile to talk about them yet. I'm having a good time not moving too much and finding second, third or fourth bottoms of things I already know.

I also work more than for many months before and I find taking pictures too much of and effort. But I miss it and here it is.
I thought about and imagined these pictures before I took them. For the first time not just shooting what comes in front of me, but really wanting to do it and looking forward to how it will look like.

Let's give us a little X-mas flow. This year I spend it with all the most important people. And the two, who are important yet another way. Let's see what comes out of it. Anyway December is full of warm, cozy evenings covered with snow, making presents, making plans, working and playing snowballs with Elba.

We move on different orbits, getting closer and further, but always in sight. So many things without a name gained their description, and yet so many remain unnamed. I shake off the rests of shame from writing about themes I didn't dare to think of. Emotions, sensations and conclusions.
One of my best friends said that I've changed. That could be possible.

I still look into horizon. But the irresistible need to rush forward it is somehow gone. Even the pictures I take lately are a proof. I find it so much more fun to take them with 50mm fixed lens, where I have to include the details of the single sequence. The time of here and now.

2 December 2012


I discovered this song on the album I knew for some time.

I listened to it on one awful, dark, cold, windy, rainy and terribly sad day, one of these days when you wake up after a nightmare and still feel its mood, but then you realize it was something real, this terrible thing that happened.
One bad, shameful mistake of undermining trust. And then hastily a punishment in discovering something I didn't have to know. Painful, earned.
In the time of few hours I skipped from the depths of sorrow to the relieving point of clearness and peace.

And that's one more story.

There is another, of writing a fairytale about the sad Boy and a Swallow and giving it as a birthday present. That's how it began. While the process of writing and struggling with myself to finish it, it rinsed my mind from all the rests of dark, painful thoughts better than diving in any lake, river and sea I dived before with eyes open.
I was myself again, the way I wanted for so long, free from needing, wanting, demanding, expecting, waiting, anxiety, longing and suffering. But in exchange promising to carry on as a unconditional support, never ending and unchanged. Because my feelings couldn't change anyway, and it would be such a waste to let them go. And because I couldn't come to terms with the concept, that this is not worth it.
As calm as never before I accepted anything what's given to me, appreciated the single moments in all their beauty and accepted the challenge of common responsibility, unexpected proposal to work together and sacrifice my time and energy for next two years.
Expecting nothing I discovered how things developed unexpectedly.
That by giving freedom to both of us I received trust, respect towards my needs, openness and a will to build up something from what we had in the reach of our hands.
Our own codex.
I wouldn't believe if I wouldn't seen what came out of it. And it was worth it.

Still we learn, take small, careful steps, sometimes back and forth. We have no destination and no goal. Just to let it be.
Nothing would picture my current state of mind better than this song and these lyrics.
Maybe except yesterdays snow, the first one this year, I didn't manage to take picture of and caught the melting rests today morning. And the evening attached to the snow.
But that's again another story.

Sleight of hand,
Jump off the end.
Into a clear lake,
No one around.

Just dragonflies,
Flying to the side.
No one gets hurt,
You've done nothing wrong.

Slide your hand,
Jump off the end.
The water's clear and innocent.
The water's clear and innocent.

30 November 2012

Elba the dog.

Elba is one of my latest stories. I never thought I would have a dog. I would never even expect, that I would want to have one. Or even ever like one.
But during the last year once sown seed has been growing and resulted with me searching through hundreds of sad dog stories on adoption websites, dozens of articles about dog behavior and two visits in animal shelter.

Finally I adopted Elba.
I was really stressed and unhappy in the beginning, even though I tried to prepare myself for that, it was so much different from taking care of the cats, even the most messy, annoying, difficult, stupid or weird cat personalities I've ever been in contact with. But no matter how bad I'd wish to, I can't take care of a cat at the moment. And maybe for some more years, maybe never again.
I'm still working on our friendship. So much to learn, but we're both patient.
And I still feel like taking Elba from the shelter I did more for her than for me.
I hope she's happier with me.

22 November 2012

Szczecin always on the way.

I was gone for almost three months, and in this time so much has happened, that I can't decide where to start. I also unfortunately haven't taken many pictures, although I'll try to catch up a bit with stories. I have a lot of them.
Autumn went by so fast and somehow I didn't manage to take lovely colorfull pictures again. Autumn is always too short.

Most of the times I travel from Germany to Poland I change the trains in Szczecin. I've been there outside the train station only twice and from both times I have lovely memories. It's a really wonderful place, a bit boring, but you can find great initiatives active there.
I was moving from North to West and back several times during this months, almost every time visiting Szczecin. Never longer than for 2 hours.
Not even once leaving the train station.

23 August 2012

The Big Balkan Trip. Croatia

Through Croatia we planned to rush through without stopping. The expected amounts of tourists and for this purpose prepared prices were scaring us off more than effectively.
We were extremely tired, a bit disappointed with speed of traveling and our hitch-hike luck reserve looked like draining.
But on the ride to Zagreb we received a message from a traveling couple of friends, which we're about to meet "somewhere in Balkans". They were asking if maybe we're somewhere around Zagreb, so we could meet there.
So we stayed on one of most inhospitable squat I've ever seen, walked through totally not interesting, average Austria-Hungarian city, but had a lovely time with friends.

Sorry Zagreb, you won't steal my heart.

But on the way there our driver shared with us his anti-system, life-reclaiming sustainable farming plans and showed us one of the beautiful places on my heart map.
A little town near Zagreb, little, warm and clear river with small waterfalls and deep ponds made out of limestones. Half an hour of swimming and jumping and one lost ear flesh-tunnel, but I'll remember it forever.

The travel back was just a chain of ridiculous long waiting near Linz, AU (9 hours with a sore throat and slight fever spent on a gas station), nice or annoying people and endless Deutsche Bahn ride in regional trains.

Even after few days I was waking up with a feeling, that I have to plan the way for today, forgetting I'm back home.

But Balkans rule. Not so surprising because of the knowledge I already had but charming, involving and totally my cup of tea.

22 August 2012

The Big Balkan Trip. Bosnia and Hercegovina

Bosnia and Hercegovina was one of our brightest points.
Arriving to Sarajevo at 4 am, spent 2 days of walking and enjoying, even finding city tour for free with the oddest guide one can imagine. I loved the mood of big city, where you can get lost, city center full of little shops, atmosphere of multi-cultural tolerating each other, but without too much of enthusiasm between Muslims, Orthodox and Catholics. You could still feel the shadow of war and siege, which become somehow one of the tourist attractions. But the city is full of life, colorful in the center and Yugo-grey everywhere else around and friendly.

Lovely summer evenings, creepy Sarejevo roses, an amazing contemporary art museum, endless searching for a džezva, nice Couch Surfing meeting, lots of krompiruša.
And the greatest stolen ride on a tram in history. Controllers were very polite and tried to suggest us bribing, but then if it didn't work out, tried to convince us that we won't be able to leave the country on the border if we don't pay.

Later on Mostar, jumping into cold as hell Neretva and then dreaming of jumping there from The Bridge. Mostar, when it comes to buildings from before the war, has wonderful town center, by courtesy of UNESCO. Some other buildings are renewed by courtesy of private or half private Muslim money. The rest is almost debris.
But when you look between the tourists, local people try to live their own, normal life. Like everywhere after the war.

The border officer didn't even took our passports in her hand. Looks like Bosnian computer system anti-public transport thefts has some defects.

21 August 2012

The Big Balkan Trip. Through-Albania to Montenegro

When we left Kosovo, we were quite lucky, because we managed to survive the small water supplies and terrible heat and to drive through 3 countries in one day.

And Albania was one country, which we passed through not stopping more than for half an hour altogether. Once for a coffee in a side-road restaurant for drivers, where people looked at my tattoos and dreads as I'd come from another planet, but still friendly.
And second time on terrible crossroads in some industrial area, where two kids tried to beg money from us quite aggressively and one of them was holding alive rabbit by his ears and waving him around like he'd be already dead. That was it.

We were rescued by two Albanians who were living in UK for last 15 years and heard some short stories about the country. Except that we saw mountains, lakes and rivers impossibly beautiful, all from a truck window, kilometers below, impossible to reach. The evening we were already in Montenegro.

Montenegro was actually our main destination, we planned to rest there and collect energy for the last of the tour up north.

It's even hard to tell what was the biggest disappointment. Hitch hiking went somehow worse than before (although it was not really fluent from the beginning), we spent hours walking or waiting in boiling, 40 degrees heat and found all possible tourists overflowing almost every town at the coast raising prices to ridiculous level.

As a reward we found lovely, small, ex-Yugo old school camp right at the sea. We basked in the sea, diving, swimming, sun bathing, fruits and vegan dough-nuts for whole two days.

Next on the map was Bosnia.

20 August 2012

The Big Balkan Trip. Kosovo

Kosovo was a place, where we didn't plan to go in the beginning. But after hearing "Don't go there, there's nothing to see/it's boring/it's dangerous" for the twentieth time, as an answer to our question "Is it good idea to go to Kosovo?".. we had to go. Just to be sure.

Hitch hiking was average, buses cheap, food surprisingly more expensive than in Serbia and totally vegan - unfriendly (including weird, egg-whey smelling bread). The land is beautiful, but amount of unfinished houses, car washes, NATO-wire in most unexpected places (like for example LKW parking lot), Bill Clinton cult (they even have his monument in Prishtina) and construction sites was surprising.

And melons. No surprise.

Prishtina, the capitol city was a one big construction site as well. Prizren with beautiful river and all kinds of temples, with houses streaming down from the mountains looked stunning at night and a bit sad in burning daylight.
Although Serbian empire still didn't recognize Kosovo as independent, the feeling of self content about having their own country you can feel on every corner.

The Big Balkan Trip. Belgrade and more of Serbia

Belgrade welcomed us with enormous, grey blocks on it's outskirts. It was about to stay overwhelming and fascinating grey, dusty and hot during the daytime. Excep that it's noisy, crowded and busy, with millions of tiny streets going in different directions, huge buildings full of air conditioning boxes sticking out and an impression of being in Metropolis, a science-fiction movie from 1927.
At night it looked different, more friendly and way more peaceful, the viewpoint from the fortress on Danube and moon-rise was a good ending of a day.
One other amazing thing was the Bigz building, an impossibly huge, 10 floored, mostly empty. Once owned by a publishing house, after fall of Yugoslavia abandoned, but then reclaimed and now still rented for small businesses, clubs and initiatives.
One vegetarian bar with a piano hanging out from the ceiling.
No flying cars or other weird vehicles.

And then came the way down south with nice drivers we spoke *Slavic* with, through little towns, one could pass through in half an hour, seeing obituaries hanging on a bus stop and empty grassy plateaus we wished to camp at. But then we caught a ride and left Serbia for Kosovo we were so much adviced against, to not be able to come back this direction because of the Serbian-Kosovo border policy.