Together with my lovely short-term volunteers – Oksana and Valeria, doing their volunteering activity at Ocean Znanja we decided to squeeze a day trip to Mostar, adding a different city and country to our Balkan itinerary. In the true sense of the word it is the city where western and eastern civilization collide. This is a city of poetry, a city of stone and sleepy, narrow winding streets. It is a city where you feel the first dashes of Mediterranean air imbued with scents of citrus and sea.
The most stunning thing with the most obvious iconic landmark of Mostar and probably from the entire Bosni&Herzegovina is the Stari Most (Old Bridge).
It was built in the 16th century during the Ottoman Empire conquer. Now it’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site. So, a strong symbol of its history led us there.
As soon as arrived to our apartments, we put on our best dresses and started our way of real experience and truly, felt like children given candies when got to see the bridge for the first time. It’s beautiful and charismatic, especially at night, when sitting upper in the old part and listening to traditional music of the region.
Still, what surprised us the most was the scenery of the valley around filled with more than 50 shades of green from the surrounding mountains and from the Neretva river. I still have a picture of this description in my head.
Mostar actually at a crossroad of religious, with Muslim Bosniaks (40% of the population) living in harmony with Catholics and Orthodox Serbs. The Ottoman influence is evident with a smell of shisha, Turkish restaurants and the alleys of Kujundziluk bazar selling all kinds of metalwork, clothes and jewelry.
Experience sights such as the Old Bazaar, the Turkish House and one of the many old Mosques. After walking around the town we enjoyed some time for strolling, some time browsing among the many old craft shops and had a cevapi-lunch in one of the picturesque local restaurants.
During our short visit, we got the impression Bosnians are very quiet and extremely nice people. It seemed like this when the owner of the awesome apartment we stayed in, welcomed us with special presents – pictures of the Old town made by his sister.
And one more note, maybe it is not about the length of time we’ve known each other; maybe it’s about instant recognition on an unconscious level and our souls knew each other a long time ago…
But once again I’m convinced that these ours Bosnianheartbeats after the feeling of togetherness during our trip will tender words left unsaid and little words desperately search for a sign. Because remember any sign that you are looking for, – is looking for you at the same time.
The project “YOU are the EU” is funded by the Agency for Mobility and EU programmes withing the program European Solidarity Corps.