Sunday, May 22, 2016

A Decade of Re-established Independence, 1000 Years a Nation

May 21st, 2016, Montenegro celebrated ten years since it's "declaration of independence" from Serbia, and previous to that, Yugoslavia. Incidentally, 2016 also apparently marks 1000 years since the nation that is now Montenegro was initially formed. 
 Gearing up for this momentous occasion, flags were hung from seemingly every streetlight pole on every major road (and many minor ones) available, in Podgorica.
 They even needed to weld the flag holders onto the poles first.
 And there were billboards everywhere saying "A Decade of Re-established Independence, 1000 Years a Nation, Eternal Montenegro."
Since the 21st is on a Saturday this year, the holiday will extend to Monday. Happy Birthday Montenegro!

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Ancient History versus Cats/Puddles

We travelled as a family to the coastal town of Bar for a few days, earlier this month. Unfortunately, most of our time there was VERY rainy. But on our last full day, we decided to take advantage of a rare sunny day and explore the historic areas of Bar. The first, and oldest, is the Old Olive Tree.
This tree is over 2000 years old, 10 meters in diameter and still fruitful!
But what the girls found the most interesting about the tree, was a small cat who was roaming around the location.
There were also some big puddles to jump in because of the rain.

Then we went to "Old Bar" which dates to the early Middle Ages and has in the past 1,000 years belonged to the Byzantine Empire, the medieval Serbian state/empire, the Republic of Venice, the Balšić family of Zeta, Louis I of Hungary and the Ottoman Empire before being reclaimed (via siege) by Montenegro in 1878. 

There are many steep climbs, both to get to the city (you pass many souvenir shops on the way up-unfortunately they are closed in winter) and once inside the walls. The previous four photos were a random sampling, in no particular order.

The girls enjoyed exploring the ruins, but their favorite find was a giant puddle at the top of the old fortress.
So, our children appreciate history, just not as much as they like cats, or puddles.