|Rehearsing my piece "Equinox", with Music Progressive Quartet
I'm sitting in the lobby of Hotel Çajupi, waiting for the bus to take us to our first concert of the tour! We left Tirana yesterday morning, and enjoyed lunch near a monastery in the mountains, en route to Bujar's village of Antigone.
|View from Gjirokaster
|Jim & Marissa on the patio
|Music room dedicated to Jim DeFina
(West Coast Symphony clarinettist, who passed away shortly after our first WCSO tour, in 2012)
|Maestro Bujar, with some young music students
Afterwards, we enjoyed a delicious feast of local food (and raki!), and mingled with the people from Antigone-- very generous and friendly hosts. This morning, we woke up to a rainstorm. Despite the weather, a small group of us hiked up the hill to explore the castle. We were completely rain-soaked by the time we hiked back down to our hotel, but got some beautiful photos-- even in the wind and rain.
|Outside the castle in Gjirokaster
|Julia and Ken, exploring near the castle
|David and Elizabeth
|Marianne and Julia
|Exploring the castle grounds
After changing into dry clothes, a couple of us enjoyed a delicious lunch at a small cafe, followed by some raki! We also checked out a couple of the small local shops selling handmade souvenirs. I picked up a beautiful wooden hand-carved bird, and a tiny antique silver coffee urn.
|Outside one of the shops in town