29.06.2012 - 01.07.2012
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The bus dropped us off and after a little debate and confusion about which direction to go, we made it to our hostel! The Dancing Monkey is a new hostel in the main street so it was pretty nice and we pretty much had the whole hostel to ourselves! Our shower didn't have any hot water and only trickled out, and the sheets were for a single bed a not double so those things were kinda annoying. But the owner and his employee came at 9pm to pick us up and take us for some traditional Albanian food and pub crawl. We were the first to go on their pub crawl so we were the test run. The food was so cheap and the beers were €1 each! Then we went to an 'illegal' bar which is one of their friends place which is being renovated into a bar... So it's illegal because they dont have a liquor license yet. This place was really cool and kinda dodgy so we were so happy to be going off the beaten track. It was Friday night and really dead so we didn't have a huge one.
The next day, we found the local pool and were told to go VIP for a few extra dollars where they had pumping tunes and a bar. We hung out for the arvo then had a go on the slippery slide...well three goes cos it was awesome fun. We had some dinner and then one of the friends of the pub crawl leader came to get us to take us to an underground bar where the pub crawl guy was dj-ing dub-step and reggae. He was terrible! And the bar was full of smoke that burnt through our eyeballs. We retreated out the front and hung out on the steps chatting to the locals...until 1am and 10 police turned up and lined up across the top of the stairs because the bar was supposed to close at midnight. We were semi shitting ourselves so we swiftly bailed.
On the way to the bus to Macedonia, we were hassled by little Gypsy kids sticking their hands in our pockets and following us down the street. They were really annoying but very cute. There are a tonne of Gypsies in Albania. We were sitting in a group with all our bags and a little Gypsy kid walked past and picked up Marks bag and tried to walk away with it. They've got game.
We were happy to have our authentic Albanian experiences, especially because we would've never gone there by ourselves. It was so cheap too! We were also happy to get the hell outta there. Sometimes it seemed like we were the first ever tourists there.