Thursday, 1 October 2015

Dardhe to Berzeshtal day seven 30.9.15

Dardhe to Berzeshtal

30th September Wednesday 

day seven Via Egnatia 
16 km
Fourth station of the Via Egnatia 

A little update about my left foot for my concerned readers... I think it was a stone bruise acquired on the second day of walking, it's feeling quite a bit better, still tender, but bearable . 

we left Dardhe school at a little after 7 am. Said goodbye to Mustafa and the early morning bar crew, and "ikim" we go! The first section of the walk is along a fairly new looking tar road.
As we turn off the tar, we meet up with a group of happy kids on their way to meet the furgon to school!
Walked past some farms, gardens with giant pumpkins!

Over a lovely little bridge, according to the guide book it's on the foundations of an original Roman bridge.
Lovely scenic walking!

Stopped about 10:30 am for a little brunch snack, olive bread we bought at Elbasan ( only a couple of days old! No mould 😉) with some tinned tuna! Tasted delicious! 

We stopped for a coffee ( and toilet stop for me, clean squat toilet) at a little bar in Qukes Skenderbeu.  Ilir and wife Irena,  niece Alketa, bar is called  coffe serxhio. Alketa is studying environmental science at university at Tirana, she's on uni break at the moment and speaks good English. Had a lovely coffee and chat.
Walking along meadows


Some lovely little opportunities to forage for fruits this afternoon, yellow and red plums and blackberries growing alongside the path... 
Lots of plum trees lining the road... I need longer arms to reach the high ones, most of the low ones have been picked.

At 1:30 pm, after a shorter day of 16 km we arrived at house of Sabri Kocali, wife, Dije, daughter in Law Manjola, husband gzim,  baby Elgis.
A very warm welcome! The dogs chained up at the gate are a bit intimidating, but Manjola heard them barking and came outside to quite them, and ask us to come in.
Dije and grandson Elgis! A real cutie a bit over one year old.
We had some lovely Turkish coffee, also raki.  Then Dije gave me a tour of the farm and gardens. The family grows almost everything they need for themselves and their livestock, including a milking cow on about one hectare!
Sabri Kocali taking their cow to the shed for milking.
So many fruit trees! Walked around with Dije, lots of fruits grown, pomegranate, Apple, plum, grapes -ruche, medlar, persimmon, figs, quince. Animals include cows, chickens, rabbits, turkeys and two ferocious sounding dogs! Thankfully chained up.

As well as cows, chickens, turkeys and rabbits.
 
Medlar needs to be bletted- allowed to ripen so much they turn brown inside... 

Harvested potatoes from the garden, lots of tomato, peppers, pumpkins, corn, onions, flowers... 
Corn-maize drying.
The family have their own spring with good, clean water.
Sabri picking grapes growing up into the trees.

Getting prepared to preserve the quince which has been sliced and put in jars with water and sugar over a fire in a big pot.
Dinner cooked on the wood stove on the verandah, very handy.
Darke - dinner

Dinner, Patate soup, sallate, peppers,  pule,(chicken legs) first boiled, then in the oven kos (yoghurt)
Macaroni, cooked first in butter
Chatted for a while about our different countries, Patrick showed photos of the desert and the road train trucks, to our hosts amazement.
It's so handy having the iPad with photos of home, Australia and our walk so far , it really helps with communication and breaking the language barrier! 

Had a lovely nights sleep after dinner. 
Dinner- darke 
Fire - zjarri 
Onion- qepe.  
Water-  uje 
Cow- lopa 
Sheep- delja 
Dog- qeni 
Cat- macja 
Foot- kemba 
Tired- e lodhur 

Accommodation:

Guesthouse, Sabri Kocali ( as described in the guide book) 
4000 leke for dinner, bed and breakfast for two of us!  A western style toilet and a hot shower! Lovely