Day 27: Jess is a Wanderer set off with Wolvo, the Germans and Samuel, the 19- year-old ‘guide’ who we’d tipsily hired to escort us to Albania’s Blue Eye…
Waking up to another day in paradise. At least that’s what it looked like given the blue skies, fluffy clouds and mountains that looked down upon us as we crawled out of bed this morning.
It seemed that in the drunken stupor of yesterday afternoon, we’d arrange for Samuel (the guest house owner’s son) to be our guide and lead us to Albania’s infamous Blue Eye (Syri Kaltër). It was a three hour walk and difficult to find without a decent map or some sort of guide. He wanted 4500 Lek (around €35) for the privilege but this was too much for us so we invited the Germans in and this brought the cost down to around £6 each. How many different currencies can I use in this paragraph!
Samuel was determined to take as many shortcuts as possible and led us down an almost vertical drop to shave off the best part of an hour. We weren’t looking forward to the clm back up as the descent was more than tricky in places. Still, we’d worry about that later.
Arriving into Blue Eye was achieved by descending a rickety old makeshift ladder and crossing a semi-ferocious stream. Finally, we were greeted by what can only be described as the bluest water I’ve ever seen. Just right there in amongst the rocks, a tiny pool of bright blue liquid! And a lady selling beer. What more could you want in life.
We spent a while with the Germans eating the lunch that Maria had sent us off with – sausage, bread, cheese, tomatoes – and climbing more rickety ladders to get better views of the Blue Eye.
Upon our return to the guest house, we ate dinner and then followed Maria around as she milked the cow, rounded up the sheep, fed the pigs and generally pottered about preparing for the next day. At more than 60 years old, there was no stopping this lady. What a trooper. I was exhausted just watching her.