We are on the last page of the four page itinerary that we received from Aurora Maris Travel at the beginning of our trip. Anita and Srdan are the behind-the-scenes representatives that ensure our bus, hotel and meals are arranged. Felipe is our representative of Dnipro Gold and Sergio's right-hand man who was sent from Brazil to ensure that we had someone with us at all times and to assist with decision making each day.
Our guide Damjan, who has been with us since we left Dakovo, is not with us today so that he can tour the wives of the representatives from around the world at a conference here. Imagine our surprise when we heard that our Damjan was taking Christine Zwozdesky for a tour today because she is here with her husband--the Hon. Gene Zwozdesky. So terrific of both of them to take time out of their busy schedules to visit with the group as we were sitting down to dinner last night. And how proud we were to be able to introduce them as our friends.
But I'm getting ahead of myself. A lot has happened since we left Vienna! When we left Vienna on the 13th we stopped at a lovely roadside restaurant and had a wonderful lunch so that we could spend more time in the beautiful city of Graz. By late afternoon we were in Zagreb and had a brief tour to orient ourselves with the landmarks. July 14th was a Zagreb day of site seeing, including a spectacular cemetery--yes, a cemetery. The grounds and memorials were beyond extravagant and our guide said that the cost of some could buy a condo. We are all glad to have visited there. In the afternoon the group went to the mall and the boys bought retro shorts which they wore the next day. Check out the legs in the shot with the statue in Ljubljana!
Yesterday we travelled to Ljubljana and on the way stopped for lunch at another wonderful restaurant. Ljubljana is a beautiful city with many shops, a canal, cafés and churches--that don't allow short shorts and spaghetti straps... for the girls either ;-) It was also Lauren Dzenick's birthday and in celebration of her day, her mom arranged for two cakes which we enjoyed with dinner.
Today is MaryAnn's wedding anniversary and the non-dancers will toast her (minus Bill) tonight.
This morning the dancers headed to the square where they performed at 10:30 am. They gathered quite the enthusiastic crowd (as the festival organizers hoped they would) and despite initially having planned only having a short performance for tomorrow, the organizers have extended the time to also include Hopak!
Tomorrow night we will say farewell to this warm and inviting city and to our many new friends. Some members of the group will travel to other parts of Europe while most of us will fly home where you can hear the many stories that were not posted. Ask Tatiana about the lock on her hotel bathroom door. Or ask the Dzenicks about their detour to St. Steven's Church in Vienna.
I hope to post some dance shots soon!