New Euro Adventure
Subj: Fashions, Castles and Port Arthur
Next morning — the first morning of my trip. Wake up from a hard sleep and it’s the dead zone — those few moments where you haven’t a clue where you are. It’s not your bed, not your home…
Then it comes back. Slovenia — my vacation… not a dream — I actually made it and I—can—barely—move!! Jet lag BIG TIME…
Body feels like its still moving at 500mph however the brain is a cement block… or, is it the other way around??
I lay in bed. Groggy. Staring at the hotel window waiting for the brain to reload everything that’s happened in the past 24. I wonder what’s out there. In a strange country, alone and don’t know anyone. It’s all outside that window — a little scary… I could use more rest…
The adrenalin kicks in — screw it. I can sleep later. Jet lag be dammed.
I’m up and hit the streets. It’s out the door and time
I stumbled into a swap meet. All this old vintage stuff to look at — I was a big fan of swap meets and love going to them. Went all the time, thought — how great to recycle!
Then my parents died. There was all their stuff from when we were little. Years and years of stuff all ending up as church donations for resale…
Since then swap meets have a somber tone to them. Like going to a wake of someone’s personal possessions.
Still I look around. Lotsa WWII stuff, except the most interesting thing isn’t on a table. It’s this woman — her outfit.
Cute butt ‘n all but can you really get past her outfit??? I’m no fashion
maven however does this really look good?
Aren’t friends or family supposed to say something??
Daughter seems ok however give her a few more years. Dad’s boring black T-shirt is totally uninspired by comparison.
Maybe pops should have a matching shirt to her pants –take off on that Hawaiian muu muu thing. Hmmm…
Wonder how they’d look?
Left the fashion family faux pas looking for some better scenery. Me tour book cites the local castle as cultural landmark so off I go. It’s built on a prehistoric site, on top the hill. Heard some Knights hung out here in 1144 and was a residence dating back to the 14th century.
Since then it’s been a military outpost, fort, countryseat and prison. Now it’s a tourist and the local cultural center.
Except, I can’t figure out how to get up there. You’d think the town would clearly mark how to get up there but this place is so low key…
The map makes it seem I start at the path by Raggae Mania. Raggae Mania?? I love it!! No vendors — no tour signs — just a narrow path going up the hill
And up and up and up… Doesn’t help that it’s so fricken hot and humid. Finally I gets to the place and it’s a bit of a surprise. Thought there’d be a tour or something… Nothing.
It isn’t awash in commercialization trying to make a buck off of anything possible. I like that. Nothing is over done — if anything, the place is understated.
There’s not a lot to see. I wander in and out of a few rooms. The place is used as cultural center for whatever arty event they got in mind.
However there is the clock tower and I gotta gets to the tower! Gotta check the view out from there
I climb more — this endless spiral staircase… it dumps you out on top of the tower. The view from up there is all green…
Nice view. No outrageous highrises — billboards… kinda lacking that American influence.
All in all, the castle grounds are more about being a relaxing place to hang rather than a history lesson. And that makes it very nice.
Stopped into the castle gift shop. The girl working there was not your typical gift shop sales person — twenty something woman, shaved head and wearing a black jump suit. We started taking… I mention Los Angeles — “Oh, L.A.!!”
Her first question — how many guns do I own? None… I could tell she was disappointed or didn’t believe me. How can someone live in America without a gun??
Indoor smoking ban…
She’s planning traveling the US in September and hitching rides from NY to Port Arthur, Texas.
I pause; looking a bit puzzled. She smiles and says, “You probably wonder why Port Arthur?” I certainly did…
Janice Joplin… she is from Port Arthur.
So much for the lack of that American influence! Oh well… good on her & ndash; hope she makes it safe and sound…
I make my way down the same way I came up and head back into town.
Wandered past a bar filled with kitty stuff — photos, ceramics. Kitty art everywhere!
Time for a beer —
In any country — b&w or color, it’s the worst!!
Georgestories copyright 2005 all rights reserved