Monday, 12 April 2010

Slovenia Part 2

Hello and good evening! I left off on Friday, which found us up at 9 not feeling so hot and down for breakfast at our B&B. Then we took a taxi up to the castle perched on the edge of the cliff overlooking Bled. The views were spectacular and there was fresh snow on the mountains, but other than that there wasn't too much to this castle. So after wandering around we walked back into town and along the lake. We popped into the church that you see in the photos and we saw the largest chandelier of all time. It was very pretty esp since it was Good Friday.

We then walked to our 2pm meeting point for our main activity of the day - white water rafting. It wasn't the warmest of days that's for sure, and it was raining so the conditions were not ideal. We actually were the 1st group out on the river this season (they started in April but didn't go on the 1st) so that was cool. We turn up to change into our gear and 1 of the girls says "Where do we change?" The guides response was "Nature" as he pointed to some trees across the way. Nice. So 6 girls are struggling to get into semi-damp wetsuits in 50 degree weather while it rains. Not the most fun I'd ever had but quite a story. The river itself wasn't that rough at all, only 2s and 3s, but we did manage to lose a Canadian as we hit full force into a rock. I think our guide did it on purpose, as he seemed to be steering straight toward rocks and telling us to paddle with all our might. It was definitely memorable! Given we were chilled to the bone and had a big night last night, we decided to take it easy tonight and rest up after dinner. So we turned in early on Good Friday night in Bled.

Saturday saw us refreshed and down for breakfast before checking out at 10. We caught the bus back to Ljubljana and had planned to go to the Skocjanske caves, but didn't do our homework on the bus schedule. The next bus down there didn't leave early enough for us to make the last tour. So instead we had a sunny day in Ljubljana and explored some areas we hadn't seen before including Tivoli Park. Not sure what to do next we both suddenly had a great idea - the Casino! We hadn't been to this one yet. So we popped in for a bit and 2.5 hours later we are still going strong. We played the slots forever and noticed a new strategy around us as we heard loud banging. We realized the man and woman on either side of us are literally banging and rubbing the slot machine screen. I am not exaggerating at all when I say they were attacking it with all their might. At one point an attendant came over and told this old woman to "be gentle." Yazz and I couldn't contain our laughter, then we thought we'd give it a go to see if it worked. I can report it did not. We both ended up down 40 euro but we played forever! It was a lot of fun!

Realizing it was time for dinner, we headed out and ended up back at the place we ate on Wed night. We felt kind of lame but we had seen this cuttlefish come out on Wed that looked amazing. So we went back and I had cuttlefish for the 1st time. For those that don't know (like me) cuttlefish is the fish they use for calamari. When you cut it you get the rings, and ours was stuffed with baby shrimp and zucchini. It was religious!
Next up was this club that we'd heard was the place to go, but we turn up and there are multiple Stag Dos (bachelor parties) going on, so not really our scene. We did however see a smurf (Steve Smith look-a-like) and the Village People, so that was entertaining. We hung there a bit before heading home after a very fun, unplanned day in Ljubljana.

We popped up early on Sunday for our 10am bus down to Skocjanske caves. We did the 1pm tour and it was a really neat experience. It was about 1.5 hours and they led you through these amazing underground caves with stalactites and stalagmites everywhere (no photos allowed.) We also saw the 3rd largest underground canyon (not sure where 1 and 2 are.) We were back in the city for dinner and did try a different place I am happy to report. It was a typical Slovenian restaurant with lots of delicious food. I opted for the venison steak with a cherry sauce and gnocchi, along with some cheese dumpling/pastry things. They were so good! Feeling too full for dessert, we popped into this trendy bar and had a Bailey's on the rocks for our farewell drink. We turned in early as we had a 3:30 alarm the next morning for our 7:30am flight.

Yazz - I had such a fantastic time, it was so nice to get away. You are a great mate & travel companion, and I look forward to the Lakes and hopefully a few more trips before we head home. Oh yeah, and there is always VEGAS 2011 BABY!!!!!! Start saving for Dean Martin - C'mon and dance with me - GO GO GO GO!

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