Sunday 2016/05/08

From Theth to Shkodra


After a very good breakfast and another stimulating conversation with Jimmy, we ride on in good weather over the Terthorja Pass towards Shkodra.

We do not want to go further today than to Shkodra. It will be good to arrive early at the hotel.

The road to the pass is much better than the track yesterday. However, there is also significantly more oncoming traffic here. A monument to Edith Durham, a well-known 19th-century English Balkan traveler who, among other things, supported the Albanian population, has a wonderful panoramic view to the mountain massifs and the Kir valley from which we rode to Theth the day before ,

From the top of the pass the road is paved again. The Theth round trip is about 60 kilometers off-road.

In between, we stop for taking some coffee, but we arrive quite early in Shkodra. There we learn that both the Kaduku and the neighboring Red Bricks are fully booked today. Therefore we have to look for a new accommodation. At Red Bricks, we have something to drink and search on for another place to stay. We like the hotel Rose Garden very well and it seems to have matching rooms available.

We ask the four boys at the next table in English for the right direction to the hotel and they willingly provide the information. A few minutes later one of the four starts talking to us in German. He probably heard that we speak German with each other. He tells us that he is studying computer science at an Austrian school in Shkodra organized by an Austrian and a German and that he has been learning German for 10 months. His German is already excellent! As part of his training, he also has the opportunity to go to Austria for a while, but he wants to go back to Albania and help to build up his country. It is a good sign that there are such young people. This maintains the hope that things may turn out better in Albania soon.

We ride on in the direction of the hotel Rose Garden, which is located a few hundred meters away in a minor street. Probably, since we are so early, no one is at the reception of the hotel. On the operation of a bell an elderly lady appears, however, she does not speak English, only Italian, which I do not understand very well. But no problem, using a mobile phone and an English-speaking mediator between her and me and we agree quickly that we take the still available 4-bed room for 45 euros including breakfast. As we ride our motorcycles to a courtyard, we are directed by the lady and her husband. Despite the language barrier, they give us a very friendly welcome.

The Rose Garden owes its name to its small courtyard, which is a rose garden cultivated by the old couple. Very comfortable, but unfortunately the cold weather does not invite you to spend too much time sitting outdoor.

The Rose Garden is also not very far from the center. We are going for dinner this evening, but tonight we decide for the restaurant San Francisco, where we have a good dinner too.