August 21st 2010
(View from the Old Bridge)
Mostar is most known for its Old Bridge, a nice little cobble-stone bridge that was completely destroyed in the Balkan War. I got to see a video clip of the actual moment when a rocket fired by the Croatians destroyed the bridge. Tourists are plentiful in Mostar’s Old Town. Everyone paid a small donation to see a man jump off the Old Bridge (which is quite a long way down). I was disappointed he didn’t do it head-first, like an actual dive. He went in feet first.
The Old Town is much like most other Old Towns, full of tourist cafes/restaurants/souvenir shops. There’s a street in Mostar called ‘Bulevar’ which used to be one of the front lines of the war, where plenty of gunfire was exchanged between the Serbs and Croats. There are many buildings still left unrepaired, full of massive holes, standing next to fully restored buildings.
(Can you tell which one was reconstructed?)
Stayed a hostel that’s quite well-known in the backpacker community, Majda’s Rooms. It was like staying in someone’s apartment because it’s so homely and warm. Majda was a nice but weary-looking lady who employed a couple of other women to help out with operations, from picking people up at the bus station to cleaning. I was actually fortunate when I arrived. It was quite a long walk from the bus station but when I arrived, Ziyada (one of the staff) was waiting to pick up two girls from the same bus so I got a ride too. My nickname for them is “Majda and her band of Merrywomen”.
On the morning before I left, Majda made us a delicious breakfast consisting of bread with scrambled eggs on top, fresh fruit (including a home-grown delicious fig which was my favorite), and some coffee. Got to chat with some other hostel-mates and turns out, one of them (Megan) did some archaelogical research in Athens with a guy (Jack) I met in Salonica (Greece) when I was staying there for the night. Nice coincidence.