There’s a little something to add to the Ohrid story. We’re staying here for four days over the Orthodox Christmas, on January 7. There’s not a whole lot going on it seems to us. No big box stores selling things like crazy, etc. The season is pretty low key. We see Santa Claus and Merry Christmas signs here and there. Because of the heavy Muslim population, many businesses are open Christmas day, though there are fewer people out and about.

Each of the Balkan towns we have visited has a large Christmas tree in some central plaza. Not a real tree, mind you, but an artificial construction that hardly looks like a tree at all in the daytime. But at night, the “tree” takes on a nice shape and sets a cheery holiday tone.

A fine Christmas "tree" brightens the plaza.

A fine Christmas “tree” brightens the plaza.

The day before Christmas a group of children have some kind of procession down the main street.

Christmas procession

Christmas procession

Even our apartment is decorated with a tree, with blinking colorful lights.

Tree on top of piano

Tree on top of piano

One of the big specialties in Ohrid is locally made pearls. Many small shops sell them. Here’s a typical one with a Christmas greeting.

A Christian jewelry shop

A small jewelry shop

Even Coke sends holiday greetings.

Santa greets us along the way and offers us a Coke.

Santa greets us along the way and offers us a Coke.

Before we leave town, the gals must get their hair cut. Without speaking Macedonian, they have a great time and leave pleased with the results.

Before the haircuts

Before the haircuts

The right touch

The right touch

Pleased customers

Pleased customers

The day after Christmas we must leave Ohrid and our pleasant accommodations.

We say goodbye to House Germanoff

We say goodbye to House Germanoff

We walk down to the pedestrian mall and past all the little shops on the pedestrian mall. There’s not much happening the morning after Christmas.

Quite the day after Christmas

Quite on the day after Christmas

Preparing for the day

Preparing for the day

Down at the far other end of town is the “bus station”, a grimy spot on the side of the road.

Near the "bus station"

Near the “bus station”

As we approach, a taxi driver engages us. We bargain. He agrees to take us for the same fare as the bus in his shiny new Mercedes 70 km over icy mountain roads to Bitola. We can’t resist the offer. And what a pleasant ride we have with a very interesting guy.

So, au revoir, Ohrid. Maybe we’ll visit again some day.

Lake Ohrid with a wave of farewell

Lake Ohrid with a wave of farewell

Advertisements