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In The News

The latest article from IPS looks at the weakness of civil society in Albania.

On RFE/RL Ismael Kadare discusses Kosovo.

TOL joins the ranks of those discussing Albania's power crisis.

BIRN reports on EU frustrations with the Albanian government's handling of police reform.

BIRN is also anticipating fireworks in parliament as MP's returned to work this week.

Apparently we had an earthquake yesterday but since it was at 7.08am I knew nothing about it. It would take more than 4.7 on the Richter scale to wake me up at that time.

Saimir Strati, having already produced a mosaic portrait of Leonardo made from nails, has now produced a mosaic of a horse made from half a million toothpicks.


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The death of communism in Albania brought a flourishing market economy to life just as it did across Central Europe and Russia. On the streets of Tirana people are buying and selling, trading goods and services in predictable, or sometimes novel, ways. The shops are the most obvious expression of this. The streets are lined with little stores selling almost everything you could want. Freed from the choking grip of state bureaucracy Albanians are now at liberty to buy whatever they can afford. No matter how absurd the demand, someone will create the supply. Hence the preponderance of shoe stores in this city of muddy streets and torn up footpaths. Especially outlandish is the fashion for high heeled white boots - about as impractical a style of footware as could be imagined. Dotted across the city are the market stalls, sometimes just one person selling bananas, elsewhere a whole street lined with sellers of fresh fruit and vegetables, meat, fish and spices. Those who cannot bring thei…


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.

Petrela Castle

This is Petrela Castle near Tirana. The site has been fortified since the 4th century, but the oldest surviving parts are from the 13th century. Today the castle is a restaurant where you can enjoy lunch while taking in the views.