Thursday, April 26, 2018

Trip Notes # 1: Slovenia

April 26, 2018

LAX  is going through another major change. A new terminal  is being built west of Bradley. Hopefully, everything will be finished before the Olympics. In the meantime, the traffic near the airport is and will be awful for the next several years.

Looking Out From Bradley Building

 Air Tahiti Nui remains a great airline. Food was over the top, flight attendants were good, sense of humor livened up the long flight and this was probably the smoothest ride ever.
 Lobster Tails and Shredded Duck: A Starter

Our connecting flight (Paris to Ljubljana) was with HOP, an  Air France subsidiary. There was a pilot strike with a possibility that some flights would be cancelled. 

Fortunately, we were the lucky ones. We got to Ljubjliana arriving on time - 24 hours from the time that we woke up at home.
All of our luggage has "Canadian identification tags." 

Typically, people come up to us and want to talk or do something nice. A woman went out of her way to make room for our luggage as we were using a shuttle to transfer between terminals.

A man helped carry one of the heavy "wheelies" up the stairs to the aircraft.

Everyone loves "Canadians."

With an extra hour to spare, we almost missed our connecting flight.  Rather than trying to navigate stairs to the ground floor of the terminal, we decided to use a small elevator set up for wheelchairs and passengers that have difficulty using the stairs. We got stuck in an elevator, rang the emergency bell, no one was interested in helping us get out. Finally. after pressing a lot of buttons, the door opened and we rushed to the plane in time before the gate attendants stopped allowing passengers to board the plane.

Flying over the Slovenian alps and looking down from 15,000 feet at the snow covered mountain tops 

and the carved out glacier valleys presented a fantastic perspective of nature's beauty.

Ljubjliana: Drop the "J's", don't pronounce the "L" and you have the correct pronunciation -- "Lubania." We returned to Hotel Cubo - an excellent boutique hotel minutes from the older and historical part of town. (We stayed here last June). 

There were two major changes since our last visit: Everything in the fully stocked mini-bar is free and each room comes with a "Handy" cell phone with unlimited internet and global calls.

Making Good Use Of The Phone: Calling Home

After checking into our over sized room, we walked to an outdoor restaurant where we ate last time.  Following a quick and satisfying dinner and unexpectedly with the temperature in the mid 70's and no rain, we strolled along a pedestrian walk-way where we could "people watch" and enjoy a yummy cup of ice cream. We then walked to a pedestrian bridge situated over the town's river and listened to local musicians. Back at the hotel and up for over 30 hours - we "crashed!"   

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The hotel staff was very accommodating and it was fun to see some of the same staff. The breakfasts remained over the top! 

Besides eggs prepared any possible way, there were assorted meats, local cheeses and beautifully prepared garnishes. Unique homemade jellies and jams, assorted delicious breads exotic honeys (such as with truffles) and super caloric deserts prepared us to face the day!

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We planned to spend the day at a national park and do some mild hiking along a picturesque gorge. It tuned out that the place was closed until Mid-May - perhaps due to this not being tourist season and it is too expensive to keep it going. The hotel staff suggested that we visit a lake area (Bohinj) that would be open and located in another national park. 

The 90 minute drive from the hotel took us to a beautiful and picturesque lake. Unlike Lake Bled (pretty but touristy), we (almost) had the entire area to ourselves.

We had a picnic lunch, fed some ducks, enjoyed the serene view

Best of all, Jerry was not worrying (too much) about work ...

Jerry even took time to draw a picture of the lake with his water colored pencils.

There is an old saying: "If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, it must be a duck!" Well, Jerry was "Quacking" to the ducks. The ducks cocked their heads trying to understand what Jerry was quacking. I guess the ducks didn't understand his Californian accent.

We met an interesting couple. She's from Spain, he's from Switzerland and with two mules carrying their gear, they started "Trekking" from France and have been walking for six months. Amazing!

Dinner this evening was at a restaurant at a different part of the old town. Pumpkin oil (rather than olive oil) was served with the bread. Yum!  Also a treat was the truffles. Truffles came with everything. It is truffle season.

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Look carefully and see some interesting things: 

 Tea for two, a car for one 

Jerry likes to take pictures of manhole covers

Jerry's Trying To Figure Out How To Buy A Parking Ticket

More soon...

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