So maybe this weekend you saw some of the news coverage of Kosovo's historic vote for independence. Maybe you asked yourself why this was so important. Maybe you wondered what all the fuss was about. Maybe you've never heard of Kosovo before. Well, I hadn't heard much either before my bro-in-law was stationed there as part of the international peacekeeping force helping the area after the war. Then in February 2005, M was selected by his law firm to work in Kosovo as part of a joint UN-USAID-NCSC project to help develop and implement Rule of Law for their emerging country, in anticipation of one day declaring their independence. M spent several months there and then, because these things always take longer than expected, and I was tired of being stuck in Florida with a 2 year old and no husband, in the summer of 2005 D & I packed up our suitcases and went to live in Pristina, Kosovo for almost 2 months while M worked with the people at NCSC. It was an absolutely amazing experience, complete with homesickness, language barriers, visits to Albanian pediatricians and lots of Balkan-style exploring. I will never, ever forget living there. We are so happy for all the Kosovars and other internationals that we met, got to know and spent time with while we were there. I hope that things can remain peaceful for them throughout this transition.
Here's a picture of D on one of our first mornings in Pristina looking out of our back door to the fields and mountains behind our apartment building:
And here's another of the street leading away from our neighborhood, Sunny Hill (not-so-Sunny in this pic though):
Here's a picture from the medieval city of Prizren of the road leading to the city Center:
Besides Kosovo, we also visited Greece, Slovenia, Macedonia and Hungary. Here's a link way back to the beginning of my blog, which I started in honor of this journey. (Scroll down the page to get to the first posts, pre-trip.) If you have time, take a look!