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Road Building

With the slow approach of spring the municipality seems to have been seized by a fit of road construction. Rruga Deshmorit e 4 Shkurtit, which until recently looked like a country lane, now sports a fine new layer of tarmac, while the pavements have been nicely reconstructed. Over on Rruga Abdyl Frasheri more pavement construction is going on.

Rruga Elbasanit, possibly the worst road in the city, also boasts some fresh tarmac but remains far from finished. If only they paint some lines and introduce the concept of driving in lanes it might even be possible to get more than 500 yards on this road in less than an hour.

Our own fine street is showing signs of progress. After two months of neglect, during which the road reverted to an even worse condition than before, the crew have returned and have been tidying up the accumulated garbage and rollering the surface. Friday's highlight was a burst tyre on the roller which popped with a sound like a small explosion and drew a crowd who observed the slowly listing vehicle. Yesterday, new piles of gravel arrived ready to be spread. We are not holding our breath, but we are hoping that this time we might even see some tarmac ourselves.

I realise that roadworks may not be the most riveting subject for a post, but when you live in a city with roads like Tirana, good roads are a real cause for celebration.


ITS said…
Great. Any news from "Zogu i Zi" o

Enver555 said…

I'd like so very much your photos of Tirana.and i want to talk with you by IM.
ourmanintirana said…
No progress on Zogu i Zi. It's another story entirely. I think it is still trapped somewhere in a series of legal challenges.
Alwyn, Got your note about coming to Athens.

What type of food do you like... I assume you mean Greek food..

Let me know and I can come up with some options. Let me know what your budget is and if you like upscale or no-tablecloth etc..
Anonymous said…
thanks a lot for the description and the pictures. I love your pictures and I hope a lot more pictures are coming from you. Good Job...Keep up the good work about Tirana :)
Ardi from USA said…
Thank you very much about the pictures!
Can you talk about your impressions on Albania as being a foreigner.
traveller one said…
HI Alwyn!
I believe you are living in one of the houses we looked at last spring when we were choosing a place to live in Tirana. I think we probably made the wrong decision with a 9th floor apartment--argg. That's why I am still in Canada while Peter is working in Tirana. I hope to be back April 1- maybe we can all have coffee?
ourmanintirana said…
Scruffy - yes, Greek food, especially lamb. I'm looking for somewhere decent but not too expensive, but no-tableclothes is fine as long as the food - and the wine - is good.

Would yoiu be free for a while to meet up. It's actually this weekend we are going. We have to meet up with relatives but I might be able to sneak off for a little while.
ourmanintirana said…
Enver555 - as soon as I could work out how instant messaging works I'll be in touch.
ourmanintirana said…
Anonymous - thanks. I have been a little unispired recently so haven't taken too many new pictures, but I hope to get back into the habit.

Ardi - thanks also. I have spread some comments about my experiences here throughout the blog. Is there anything in particular you had in mind?

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Welcome to Our Man in Tirana. I moved to Tirana, capital of Albania, in October 2005 and left in October 2007. This blog is a mix of photographs, reports, links, impressions and, undoubtedly, prejudices relating to the city and the country.

Since I am no longer in Tirana I am no longer updating this blog. However, there are over 300 posts covering this two year period and I hope that they are still of some interest.

So if you are curious about Albania or if you are planning to visit I hope this blog will be of value.


And now the end is near
and so i face nanananana...

Never did like that crappy song.

But it's true nevertheless.

Tomorrow in the wee hours of the morning we will be heading for the airport for the last time. I suppose it was too much to expect that I could have kept this going while getting ready to leave. So apologies for the lack of postings over the last weeks. This is post number 380 something so I suppose one post every two days is not a bad average.

There were probably 380 more in my head or scribbled down on scraps of paper, but many of them are perhaps best left there.

I suppose I should be penning - or typing - my final thoughts and reflections on two years in Tirana, but right now I don't have any. Maybe in a month or two though I might come back with something.

Thanks to all of you who have read this blog - especially those of you who have become regulars. Thanks also for linking and thanks to all who left comments.

As for the other stars of the blog, Bella now has her own …

Miss Globe 2007

On Saturday, we were at the Rogner meeting with an expat friend who was leaving Tirana. It was breakfast time, and as our friend was finishing his tea the breakfast room started to fill up with over-dressed (or under-dressed) young women wearing blue sashes. These were the contestants for the Miss Globe 2007 beauty pageant being held in Tirana tonight at the Palace of Congresses. High heel boots and mini-skirts - or in a couple of cases micro-skirts, or possibly just belts - have never struck me as obvious breakfast attire, but the girls seemed happy enough tottering and wobbling around with their tea and toast. I'm not sure why they were wearing their sashes - perhaps in case they forgot which country they came from.
As we were leaving they were boarding a large coach which I had seen a number of times around the city in the last few days for their next trip. I'm not sure how some of them made it up the steps, or how they managed to sit down, but perhaps these are the kinds o…