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Amintiri din paradis – Chutes du Carbet

Oamenii vorbesc despre momente Kodak, dar eu nu am crescut cu Kodak ci cu teleenciclopedia aşa că momentele mele speciale din vacanţe sunt momente teleenciclopedia.

La prima întâlnire cu jungla momentul teleenciclopedia a durat câteva ore bune şi a fost printre cele mai intense fiindcă nimic din tot ce poţi citi sau vedea la televizor nu te poate pregăti pentru întâlnirea cu o entitate gigantică şi atât de vie cum se simte pădurea tropicală.

Poate că fotografiile mă vor ajuta să completez atmosfera pe care nu o pot pune în cuvinte destul de grăitoare fără a scrie un roman mai lung şi mai complicat decât Ulysses, aşa că le voi lăsa să vă descrie ele senzaţia scufundării într-o mare caldă de verde şi viaţă alertă.

Am avut prima întâlnire cu jungla tropicală cu ocazia  traseului spre Chutes du Carbet despre care puteţi afla mai multe de aici dacă sunteţi prieteni cu limba franceză. Dacă nu, va trebui să citiţi ce vă povestesc eu mai departe fiindcă francezii din Guadalaupe, ca niste francezi veritabili, nu simt nevoia să îşi traducă site-urile şi în engleză.

Ca mai toate drumurile din Guadelupa, drumul către Chutes du Carbet este idilic, pe şosele perfecte şi printre case frumoase în stil colonial, aşezate armonios printre plantaţii de banane şi trestie de zahăr.

Senzaţia de visare care ne-a cuprins în faţa peisajului care se derula cu rapiditate a fost destrămată brusc, foarte aproape de punctul de plecare în traseu când am descoperit, şocaţi, că iguanele cu care ne întâlnisem până atunci doar pe plaja în Gossier sunt mari căţărătoare în copaci.

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Hmm…..

Dupa o astfel de descoperire începi să priveşti cu alţi ochi ideea unei incursiuni în pădure, deşi mai mult ca sigur iguanele preferau copacii încălziţi de soare de la marginea drumului celor din pădurea mai mereu scufundată în nori şi ceaţă.

Pădurea tropicală, ca orice altă pădure, dupa umila mea parere, este foarte frumoasă chiar dacă într-un fel aparte. Pe cât de frumoasă pe atât este de diferită de tot ceea ce am văzut şi cutreierat până acum în materie de păduri. Luxuriantă, ca o creşă de plante de apartament pe steroizi, umedă şi alunecoasă, cu fructe bizare atârnând de ramuri pe care le priveşti curios până afli că sunt cuiburi de furnici şi grăbeşti pasul fiindcă ai văzut prin filme cum stă treaba cu furnicile ucigaşe din junglă.

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Ploaia şi lumina îngrozitoare au ţinut aparatul foto în husă aşa că am putut să mă concentrez mai mult pe experienţa urcuşului prin ploaia caldă şi printre copacii uriasi, familiari şi nu prea, fiindcă ficuşii trebuie să fie plantele acelea destul de rezistente încât să reziste neglijenţei tale când le ai în apartament, nu copaci în care te-ai putea urca dacă nu ar fi atât de uzi, lipiciosi şi plini de muşchi şi cine ştie câte vieţuitoare cu prea multe picioare.

Vriesea creşte în ghivece de la Ikea, nu în vârful altor copaci, nu ?

 

Ei bine, tot ce ştii despre plantele tale de ghiveci e fals. Ba mai mult, ce creşti tu în ghiveci, după întâlnirea cu adevăratele plante tropicale te face să te simţi un fel de monstru care ţine plante exotice ostatice, subnutrite şi triste când locul lor este la tropice, în păduri în care plouă mereu, iar când nu plouă e ceaţă călduţă, ca o îmbrăţişare.

Traseul prin junglă nu a fost foarte diferit de unul prin padurile noastre, poate doar faptul că traseul era mai bine amenajat şi a părut şi mai greu pe unele porţiuni, după lunile noastre de pauza si pe fondul caldurii cumulate cu umezeala şi cu ameţeala cronică de care se făcea vinovată schimbarea de fus orar.

Căldura te face să îţi pese mai puţin că ai apă şi noroi în bocanci şi asta îţi permite să petreci mai mult timp cu ochii în junglă fiindcă în nebunia verde a miilor de plante nici nu ai putea pătrunde altfel decât cu privirea, totul fiind un amalgam de copaci, liane şi muschi, toate creând un desiş pe care nici nu poţi să-ţi închipui că ai putea să îl străbaţi şi pe care ţi-l poţi imagina cu uşurinţă ca fiind plin de vietăţi periculoase.

Nimic mai fals, jungla din Guadelupa stă foarte prost/ sau foarte bine, depinde cum priveşti problema, la capitolul şerpi şi insecte sau chiar animale periculoase deoarece acum mulţi ani nou veniţii au avut ideea genială de a gestiona problema şerpilor introducând pe insulă mangustele care i-au scăpat de şerpi, dar şi de papagali si alte creaturi mai degraba simpatice…

Prin urmare poţi încerca să petreci o noapte în junglă fără să rişti să mori de altceva decât de frică dacă ai o imaginaţie bogată, sau dacă  vreun băştinaş cu multe picioare te-ar lua, pe întuneric, drept vreo magistrală modernă numai bună pentru incursiuni nocturne în căutarea hranei.

Ciudat, contrar aşteptărilor mele jungla a fost chiar tăcută de dimineaţă până spre amiază cât am colindat în căutarea celei de-a doua cascade Carbet. După simfonia zgomotoasă din fiecare seară petrecută acasa la Michel liniştea din pădure părea de-a dreptul….nepotrivită.

Cred , totuşi că şi broaştele şi insectele din junglă functionează după alt fus orar, nu doar noi.

Întâlnirea cu a doua şi cea mai spectaculoasă cascadă a lui Carbet a fost tot un moment de documentar. Când am ajuns lângă ea gâfâind şi interpretând imnul bocancilor plini cu apă pe vreo 20 de voci ( aka tălpi) , cascada se ascundea sub un văl gros de ceaţă.

Nori buclucaşi se plimbau în jurul micii văi parcă în special ca să mă supere pe mine tăindu-mi vederea spre valea în care ar fi trebuit să se vadă marea Caraibilor şi către cele mai pitoreşti cadre spre care tare aş fi vrut să îndrept obiectivul.

Când mama natură a hotărât că m-a luat destul peste picior, ceaţa a fugit spre vale şi am rămas fără cuvinte în faţa frumuseţii cascadei care până acum stătuse ascunsă atât de bine încât nici nu ştiam că are şi un al doilea nivel.

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M-am jucat multă vreme cu diverse compoziţii încercând să o descopăr pe cea care face cea mai multă dreptate frumuseţii cascadei din inima junglei. Vă las pe voi să judecaţi dacă am reuşit sau nu.

La coborâre am urmat acelaşi traseu, dar pentru variaţie ploaia a hotărât că ne-a chinuit destul şi a plecat spre zone mai inalte şi probabil alţi turişti pe care să îi chinuie puţin.

Două ore mai târziu, cu genunchii tremurând, bocancii plini de noroi, dar cu inimile fredonând genericul ştiţi voi cărei emisiuni ne-am refăcut forţele la Jangal Kafe cu un meniu pe bază de banane, meniu pe care nu l-am fotografiat, fiindcă nu era tocmai fotogenic, însă a fost foarte bun.

Am savurat banane verzi ( vertes) sub formă de chipsuri pentru început, am continuat cu banane prăjite în formă de cartofi prajiti, piure de banane, pui creol, iar în încheiere am făcut cunoştinţă cu desertul care avea să devină leit-motivul vacanţei: banane la grătar scăldate bine în rom, cu cocos ras pe deasupra.

Încă nu ştim cum se face că nu ne-a trecut vreodată prin cap până acum să facem şi banane la gratar, dar este evident că vor fi desertul cel mai des preparat în casele noastre vreme de un an şi mai bine fiindcă este bun, bun, foarte bun.

Informaţii tehnice: Cascadele râului Carbet denumesc, de fapt, o serie de trei cascade din care noi am ajuns la doar două. Prima este şi cea mai accesibilă, la doar 20 de minute de traseu lejer cu plecare din parcarea special amenajată, loc în care se achită şi o taxă de acces de vreo 2 euro. La a doua se ajunge parcurgând un traseu de vreo 2,5 ore de mers serios, traseu amenajat cu scări sau săpat în stâncă pe anumite porţiuni, spre final.

În zile cu vreme bună se poate face baie în bazinul natural creat de a doua cascadă la întâlnirea zgomotoasă cu stânca după căderea de 110 metri.

Un secret bine păstrat de localnici îl reprezintă izvoarele termale din zona cascadelor. Credeţi-mă, după un tur de forţă până la cascade şi înapoi nimic nu este mai frumos decât să urci pe firul unui banal râu de munte pentru a descoperi cu stupoare şi maximă încântare că apa este caldă, în unele cazuri chiar fierbinte şi poţi să te scufunzi atât cât îţi permite timpul în bazine naturale cu apă la peste 35 de grade.

Fiecare traseu pe munte ar trebui dotat cu asemenea băi termale naturale, deşi dacă stau să mă gândesc prea bine ideea asta nu ar prinde în Romania, cel puţin nu în sensul dorit. Ce ştiu sigur este că în Guadelupa nu am găsit pe nimeni spâlandu-şi covoarele în apa calda, am gasit doar cunoscători ai secretului cărora le-am dat bineţe după care le-am invadat băile secrete, dar nu prea.

Ne-an reîntâlnit cu jungla câteva zile mai târziu, când am abordat traseul spre La Soufriere, cel mai înalt vârf din Guadelupa şi Antilele Inferioare, un munte cum nu am mai văzut şi pe care va fi greu să îl surclaseze vreun altul, dar despre el veţi afla mai multe in episodul urmator.

Amintiri din paradis – Chutes du Carbet

 

If you are looking for the perfect offer for a holiday with a twist and the twist being a drum ( Guadeloupean traditional drum) then check out the amazing offers my friends from Holday with a Drum have prepared just for you. They rock at holiday planning, drum teaching and playing and most importantly, memory making.

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Over the Edge

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“People don’t alter history any more than birds alter the sky, they just make brief patterns in it.”

If I Were a Bird

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If I were a bird… even just for a day. Because the sight of a bird on the canvas of the sky is the one thing that will make my heart flutter ever single time, for as long as I’ll be me.

Guadeloupe holiday planner (part 1)

trip feb 2016

Ever since I first went to Gran Canaria in February some years ago I started realizing how nice it is to get away from cold for a while, if possible in the midst of winter. It’s strange that the thought has never crossed my mind before since it is so obvious but we, Romanians, are not that used with such thoughts and behavior.

With us it’s more in the natural trend where if it is winter you go to ski resorts, if you can afford it, or stay at home and only go to the mall on weekends.

Our European friends from the northern countries are quite used to go to sunny places during January and February but the Romanians who do this seem to be outnumbered by those taking photos in ski resorts.

Do not get me wrong, I love both types of getaways but when the opportunity appeared to put on my traveling shoes and search deep in my pockets for money for an airplane ticket my choice was simple: Guadeloupe was the right choice for February 2016.

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Where in God’s name is Guadeloupe ? 

Guadeloupe is in France.

True statement but also very confusing because Point a Pitre, Guadeloupe’s main city is 6754,34 Km away from Paris.

So Gaudeloupe is in fact one of France’s “région d’outre-mer” with the same political status, currency and language (arguable) as metropolitan France. The culture, on the other hand is completely different and extremely interesting requiring on site research and a lot of history reading.

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How is Guadeloupe?

Heavenly, I would argue without ever stepping foot there but with plenty of reasons given by my online research and stories of friends that went there for a visit and moved there for good some months later.

Imagine a butterly shaped island ( actually two close islands) in the middle of the blue ocean featuring vulcanoes, jungles, the best beaches, amazing marine wildlife and a life rhythm you cannot possibly imagine on Continental Europe. Picture having as neighbors Cuba, the Dominical Republic, Puerto Rico.

Or even better, think of captain Jack Sparrow running towards trouble or away from trouble in one of his adventures. That’s the place, exactly.

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Have you started packing yet?

How to get there :

If you’re not rich you have to start one year in advance by saving money. If you are rich you are not wasting time reading this so problem solved.

Once you have the money for an airplane ticket and at least the faint possibility of getting more for the rest of expense you can start looking for airplane tickets.

From Romania you have to be aware that you will need to have at least a stop in a major airport. For instance you can go to Paris and then to Point a Pitre and you can buy the tickets separately for each part of the trip. Spending a night or more in Paris in between flights might be an interesting option.

You can look for deals with Air France, Lufthansa or Air Carriben.

The best deal we could get being a bit pressed by external constraints got us ticket at the mesmerizing price of 700 euros per person with AirFrance.( not too bad and not too good considering the distance)

We’ll fly to Paris ( Charles de Gaulle) get a cab or buss to Orly airport and take the second flight to Point a Pitre. Combined duration of fights: 8h50 for going and 10:20 for the return flights.

Just imagining all that time spend reading books gives me goosebumps.

Where to stay:

I told you before that Guadeloupe looks just like a butterfly ( one with pretty crroked wings, but nonetheless a butterly). The capital, Point a Pitre is in between those wings that are very different in terms of looks or as Wikitravel puts it:

  • Basse Terre: green and lush vegetation, mountainous with a sulphuric volcano.
  • Grande Terre: flat and dry with a lot of beaches, some of them very touristic.
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Photo from: skyscrapercity.com

We found it practical to stay in the Grande Terre side, in Gossier, closer to the capital city and the touristic area since the island is not that big and we’ll be wandering around a lot.

The accommodation is not very expensive and you can find good deals on booking.com or airbnb.com. The latter charges a fee for booking but contains many houses in idyllic places, the service seems to be superior and for a longer stay you could be in advantage with them.

Beware, you might look for a nice place by the beach, be deceived by the photos and end up spending your holiday in a shack by the beach, which might be cool or not depending on your standards and expectations. Do not trust the photos entirely and try to read between the lines while looking for the perfect place for you.

What to Do? Everything!

This section was meant to be called what to do, but I thought I may be a lot clearer saying: do everything. Nonetheless, I will also provide some tips that coincide greatly with our plan for the holiday.

You can enjoy the perfect beaches and waves, be lazy and overuse sunscreen but you could do that almost anywhere so I think it is best that you put on your walking shoes or swimming fins and do things that are a lot more interesting:

  Trekking and nature walks:hiker

  • Climb “La Soufriere” the highest mountain peak in the Lesser Antilles: 1467 m; there are many easier ways to get to the top but we chose the hardest: an 8 hours trek through the jungle. I’ll let you know how that will turn out
  • Take a walk to Pointe des Chateaux – 1 to 2 hours long walk;
  • Hike to Chutes de Carbet  – 6 hours trek

Trips and cruises: yacht

You can find one night cruises from Guadeloupe to Martinique, Aruba and Barbuda or  Dominica.( I saw quite nice offers starting from 150€, transport and accomodation included); For offers go to: Kiosquedesiles

Chosen method of transportation in between the islands :  l’expres des Illes :

Seside fun:

snorkelSnorkeling and diving are a must in Guadeloupe and everywhere around. For an unforgettable adventure book a flight from Guadeloupe to Grenada and dive in the underwater museum;

If time and money are too short for Grenada you can find a lot of local agencies willing to help you ( more info HERE)

Nightlife and day life fun:

For the full list of the events in Guadeloupe in 2016 go to the official Antilles site.

Mingle with the locals at the Carnival if you plan to go there in February – as we’ll do. Take plenty of photos and enjoy the music, the dancing and the spirit of the place.

That’s all for now, I’ll be back to tell you about the estimated costs, what to pack and other useful information I am still working on.

Yours trully, Logo final

 

 

2016 Reading Challenge

Hi.

My name is Claudia and I’m a bookahoolic. Browsing through my reading history of the last years you might assume I’m a fantasy/ sci-fi– hoolic but all this is about to change due to a brilliant reading challenge I found on 9GAG.

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Yeah, I’m that kind of person that uses 9GAG for such purposes. 😀

I decided to take on the challenge without knowing that the list is 40 items long ( good thing you did not put numbers to those ideas, creator) but that was the least of my worries when I started looking for the titles to read.

Although it is way longer than my recent records in term of books read per year what worries me most is the way I will manage to get my hand and eyes on some of the titles I chose. I also worry what will I do faced with possible wrong choices I’ll get stuck with…

I must admit openly that I have snuck in there as much sci-fi as I could and some titles or authors I long wanted to read. Some titles are to be decided, and I can hardly wait to meet someone and right after introducing myself to ask for a book recommendation. I also have to call my dad and ask him to recommend me a book, visit a bookstore and choose one of the self-improvement books I own but never read.

Frherg-benet-zeppelin-jack-marius-surleac-252880om the choices I made I am very anxious to read Marius Surleac’s Zeppelin Jack, Slaughterhouse Five, The Martian Chronicles, Sandman and Tim Cope’s On the Trail of Genghis Khan.

I, and the rest of the world wait for The Winds of Winter and hope for it to be published this year but taking into account the video below I am afraid I will have to find a replacement by the end of the year:

Oh, I forgot to mention I cheated on the item: “A book with a protagonist that has your occupation”. Since I am a business consultant and, thank God for that, there are no books with such boring protagonists I took the liberty and great pleasure of choosing a book about what I would like to be, ie a photographer.

For that I thought about choosing a book by a photographer and stopped to browse Hans Strand’s works. Unfortunately they lack text so they would not count as books although I will buy them for my library for sure this year.

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Oh, and I will also enjoy Lisa Eldrige’s – “Face Paint”, a late Christmas present I am still to receive and fully enjoy. It’s in the category “ a book written by a celebrity” because Lisa is one when it comes to makeup. You did not see that coming from me, I know. 😀

So 40 items in the challenge, actually over 50 books to read and just 12 months to do it. I will do my best and also write about the books, not reviews, maybe subjective accounts on my reading experience or maybe just sentences in term of I loved/ hated it.

This is my 2016 reading challenge list. I invite you all to make your own or borrow from mine and I will do my best to complete it as much as possible in a year that promises to be full of many things time consuming.

  1. A book based on a fairy tale: Philip Reeve – Here lies Arthur
  2. A national book award winner – ?
  3. A YA bestseller: John Green – The fault in our stars
  4. A book you haven’t read since high school – Alexandru Struteanu- Nemuritoarea pasare Phoenix
  5. A book set in your home state – Ioana Parvulescu – Viata incepe vineri
  6. A book translated to English: Yevgeny Zamyatin – We
  7. A romance set in the future: Claire Delacroix – The Prometheus Project
  8. A book set in Europe: Markus Zusak- The Book Thief
  9. A book that’s under 150 pages : Annie Proulx – Brokeback Mountain
  10. A New York Times bestseller: Stephen King – The Bazaar Of Bad Dreams
  11. A book that’s becoming a movie this year: Anthony Doerr – All The Light We Cannot See
  12. A book recommended by someone you just met – tbd
  13. A self- improvement book- tbd
  14. A book you can finish in a day – Savatie Bastovoi – Cartea despre femei
  15. A book written by a celebrity: Face Paint – Lisa Eldridge
  16. A political memoir: Malala Yousafzai – I am Malala
  17. A book at least 100 years older than you : Robert Louis Stevenson – Treasure Island
  18. A book that’s more than 600 pages – Joe Abercrombie’s Shattered Sea Trilogy – Half a King, Half the world, Half a war (3)
  19. A book from Oprah’s Book club: Sue Monk Kidd – The Invention of Wings
  20. A science-fiction novel: Wiliam Gibson – Neuromancer
  21. A book recommended by a family member – tbd
  22. A graphic novel: Neil Gaiman – Sandman (10)
  23. A book published in 2016: GRR Martin – The Winds of Winter ( if we get lucky)
  24. A book with a protagonist that has your occupation: Whitney Otto – Eight Girls Taking Pictures
  25. A book that takes place during summer: William Faulkner – As I Lay Dying (too sad, gave up on it for ever)
  26. A book and its prequel: Thomas Harris: The Silence of the Lambs and Red Dragon (2)
  27. A murder mystery: Gillian Flynn – Sharp Objects
  28. A book written by a comedian: Amy Poehler – Yes Please
  29. A dystopian novel: Cormac McCarthy – The Road
  30. A book with a blue cover – Alex Moldovan – Olguta si un bunic de milioane
  31. A book of poetry : Marius Surleac – Zeppelin Jack
  32. The first book you see in a bookstore- tbd
  33. A classic from the 20th century : Ray Bradbury – Farenheit 451
  34. A book from the library – tbd
  35. An autobiography: Maya Angelou – I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
  36. A book about a road trip: Tim Cope – On the Trail of Genghis Khan
  37. A book about a culture you’re unfamiliar with: Peter Neville – China: People Place Culture History
  38. A satirical book: Kurt Vonnegut – Slaughterhouse Five
  39. A book that takes place on an island: Ernest Hemingway – The old man and the sea
  40. A book that guarantees to bring you joy: Ray Bradbury – The Martian Chronicles replaced by Ransom Riggs’ Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (and it did)

Wish me luck 🙂

Heartfisher

Have you ever seen a “heartfisher”? Me neither until the 31rst of December 2015 around noon when I was freezing to death in a forced stroll through the lovely town of Tryavna.

I had no photo expectations or plans and I was carrying the 70 – 300 lens more out of habit than out of the idea that I might put it to good use. And then it happened, I saw the blue flickr of small wings and realized I was watching the bird I had always wanted to photograph. There it was, bathing in the sun on some branches on the shore of a small river. It even took a dive for food while I was watching it mesmerized, with the wrong lens on, too far to get a decent photo.

I nevertheless tried and after some shots decided to try and change my lens in proper time. Once I managed to fish it out of the backpack and set it with trembling, freezing hand the miracle was gone. The fisher dove for cover under the branches and in spite of my silent prayer he did not reappear for a proper shot.

I stood there waiting for a while, hoping for the miracle to happen but, as any proper miracle, it failed to happen. I sighed and ran after my friends who were now a mile away wondering what in God’s name I might have found so fascinating.

They failed to understand, as always, my joy of having captured even from too far away my first Kingfisher, a true “heartfisher” since I keep staring at this shot whispering that next time and I will do it better.

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This was my lucky encounter of 2015 and I still feel the joy of having seen and captured on camera such a small and evasive beauty.

 

Summer fun time: rafting on Tara river

One of the best experiences of this year’s summer holiday to Montenegro has definitely been the rafting day spent on the Tara river with the amazing people from raftingmontenegro.com.

We started the day by driving 70 kilometers through the magical realm that Durmitor National Park is ( narrow, perfect road) from Zabljak, our base camp, to Scepan Polje, the headquarters of the crazy bunch that run the show down Tara.

On our way we kept being surprised by the beauty of… well, everything we saw.

Durmitor park with its mountains, the beautiful Prutas we had climbed only one day before, the mesmerizing blue of the Piva lake ( actually a water reservoir).

Piva lake

Piva lake

We reached the camp site at around 10:00 and were invited to join them for breakfast and a steaming mug of fresh coffee. After the breakfast we had a chance to look around, and, more importantly, to convince two of our most reluctant friends to join us.

Team now in full numbers, we could have our own boat and the fun was ensured, especially since two of our people were terribly afraid of water.

After picking up our gear(helmets, life jackets, water shoes, neoprene suits for those who feared the cold) we were taken to the cars that already had the boats on the roof and our driver took us to the departure point, some 30 Km away from the Waterfall rafting center.

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At the destination the boats were taken down from the cars, we’ve met our “captain” and we went down the river. Oh, the river was assumedly one meter deep, in fact some 15 meters in some tranquil places and a couple of meters in the areas with rapids and waterfalls.

For the first time in a rowing boat, never having rowed before and with two people scared to death, chaos ensued to my great delight.

Our captain tested us and decided, probably, that we were the worst team ever to have rowed down Tara.

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Our unsynchronized rowing was causing us to drift aimlessly or, at best, row upstream.  Want to see the face of true despair and doom? This is it, once our guide saw us rowing:

That's when we knew we were doomed

That’s when we knew we were doomed

We knew things were serious when he lit a cigarette and told us to calm down and listen to him. ( in the meantime, a lot more normal boats and crews were rowing calmly trying to avoid our chaotically spinning in the middle of the river).

After we calmed down enough to listen to him and try to think at what we were doing, some people were found inapt for paddling and others got a paddle instead. I got a paddle and a good place to row with that occasion, yey!

Down we went afterwards, through calm waters, not knowing how our fragile balance will hold in the approaching rapids and waterfalls. When they did come, we behaved admirably, or at least this is how I remember it…

The films taken with the GoPro mounted on my helmet might tell a different story involving screams and hysterical laughter, but that material needs to be edited and will not be available too soon.

We rowed down Tara which is a combination of slow water and rapids for about 4 hours, with two stops, actually three for us since our guide took us to a hidden waterfall. They say the level of water was extremely small, but in the deep areas the water seemed to have been at least 15 meters high, crystal clear and in gorgeous hues of green or blue.

the team

Needless to say, we were soaking wet because our lovely captain had taken great care in making sure we were approaching the rapids the worst possible way, that makes sure everyone gets soaked.

It is a mystery to me how he kept having dry cigarettes while we were all soaking wet and loving it. Meanwhile, my camera was stored in a dry bag tied to my leg and our feet were tightly secured under ropes on the boat’s bottom.

I did not get a chance to use the camera much, as it needed to stay dry, but we shot a lot of films that will find their way to a movie describing the whole holiday, sometimes this winter.

To describe it shortly, we rowed, we laughed, we laughed some more, we rowed some more, we sang happy birthday to Mada ( who is terribly afraid of water but got a rafting trip as a birthday present because that’s the kind of friends we are), we chased other boats in order to be the first and surely made a memorable impression to our captain who was kind enough to play along with our madness, and sadistic enough to make sure we took every descent through rapids the wrong, water splashing way.

The fun ended too fast once we arrived the embarking point where our drivers waited for us with their waterproof now cars since we were soaking. It started raining badly the second we got into our cars but it hardly mattered, we were as wet as we could get.

fin

Back at the Waterfall center we changed and enjoyed a lovely meal: hot soup and fried trout from the river. We said our goodbyes with sadness to our new friends and drove homo, to Zabljak, through the same perfect landscape, now with clouds meant to add some drama to the scenery.

Durmitor after the rain

Durmitor after the rain

Everyone loved the experience, even the ones that started the day scared to death and now we can hardly wait for the next time.

I wholeheartedly recommend raftingmontenegro.com for your rafting experience, they are the best and their offers are not at all expensive. Our experience cost us only 40 euros each, meals included and was great, from the fast booking process to the rafting trip, the meals and the friendly faces we encountered everywhere.

You can find them here: http://www.raftingmontenegro.com/ . If you decide to go on an adventure with them please come back and tell me how it’s been, I already plan on going back in the spring when the water is bigger and so is the fun.

monkey business

Albums,  a short movie and more stories of a great summer holiday will follow. Stay around and always remember that limits, especially those in your minds, exist for breaking and the feeling of going beyond everything you know is simply amazing.

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