Sorry for the late blog post- since Mostar I’ve been incredibly busy, not including the delay losing and subsequently recovering my harddrive caused.
After enjoying the view from the minaret, Arnela and I headed down to continue through Mostar (and let me tell you, the amount of talent required to get down a minaret’s top 10 steps without falling should not go unappreciated).
Heading down, however, required pictures along the way.
Afterwards, we walked down the main walkways, which have been shut off to cars and are cultivated for tourists (there are quick one-day trips to Mostar from Dubrovnik, so the level of tourist is much higher than Sarajevo, which mostly hails officials or academics or journalists).
We headed out of the main streets for a bit to see the mass graveyards, where citizens were forced to bury their dead at night because of sniper fire. Mostar, as mentioned previously, was subject first to fighting between the resident Croats and Bosniaks before the Washington Agreement, when the Croats and Bosniaks joined forces to fight the Serb forces.
Usually Muslim gravestones don’t have images of the dead on them, but Amer explained to us that sometimes, when the victims were children, parents would put a picture so that they could remember them.
We traipsed through the market for a few minutes:
Before heading into a restaurant that was situated in a cave. (Thanks to WorldMUN I’ve been to a lot of cool restaurants, bars, and clubs in my time, and this one was definitely on par in terms of ambiance and location).
I whip my hair.
One of my personal favorites:
After coffee we headed to a museum that had beautiful views but terrible lighting for photographs inside. We saw ancient armor, the history of Mostar and the construction and reconstruction of the bridge, among other artifacts. The museum was located in a tower at one end of the bridge and consequently consisted of nearly six floors connected by increasingly tall and steep ladders- we had to go down the last one sideways because going straight wasn’t physically possible.
After this museum, we headed down over the bridge itself. Though the bridge doesn’t look so tall in photos, it reaches 75 feet and the water below, while deep, is also treacherous because of rocks. Mostar uses euros but accepts convertible marks, so professional divers make an entire living in Mostar by standing on the bridge, waiting until they amass anywhere from 30 to 50 euros from tourists, and then they dive. They repeat this all day long, and I imagine make quite a profit.
Walking over the bridge we went to lunch at a restaurant located directly on the river. To be honest the food wasn’t phenomenal, but the view couldn’t be beat.
We encountered a few kayakers, who encountered a few divers, and we watched as they shouted a conversation coordinating their passage.
Before heading back the bus and to the Dervish Monastery, which was stunning in itself. This short journey, however, obviously required gelato. I opted for cantaloupe, which I wouldn’t exactly recommend because it was more tart than sweet, and we all know how I feel about sweet things (or lack thereof).
Until tomorrow- or perhaps tonight, if you can stomach two in one day!