625 Words For A Rainy Day - Lookin For John Fairweather - CycleBlaze

January 15, 2014

625 Words For A Rainy Day

It rained in the evening and it is still raining. I was anxious to leave because I've been here three days. The forecast gave only showers for the morning, so it may've been possible to get away, but looking out first thing, there was no way I could've ventured out, as it was raining heavy and persistently.

Returning back inside, the hostel receptionist with a grin that says he knows the answer, asks "another night?" "Yes" I resign to the reality that I'm here another day to wait out the rain. He's happy as there aren't any other guests at the moment.

The rain eases off in the forenoon, so I get out for a walk along one of Tirana's main shopping-streets while being careful to stay out of the puddles. I enter a general sports shop that do bikes. I want to see what tyres they stock. Apparently not any as I see none displayed. I ask with the help of touching a tyre on a display-bike. But the assistant doesn't quite get what I'm asking. And in the end says "sorry, no English."

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The next place I go into is a clock-shop. My watch remember isn't working. Most probably the battery's gone. The assistant here does speak English. He unscrews the four screws and removes the plate on the back of the watch, then prises out the battery. He straightaway sees that there's nothing the matter with the battery. The problem is the rubber seal meant to keep out moisture wasn't put back properly in its place when I had a new battery put in just before Christmas.

I stop for lunch at a pizza place. The vegetarian pizza is fine and I've a can of coke to drink. The bill for the pizza is 400 Lek which is normal, and the coke come to an astonishing 180 Lek, which seems far and above the normal price. Then to make matters worst, the young guy behind the counter tries short changing me.

I hand-over a thousand bill and he claims to have no change. He sees I've also a two-hundred, so asks for it too; so I hand it to him, as I believe he may find a five-hundred and a hundred Lek coin to give me back. He goes off out next door with my 1200 Leks to get the change. Then returns a few minutes later and hands me back two two-hundred bills. So not content in making a large profit on the can of coke, he's going to rip a 200 Lek tip from me too. But there's no way as I stand firm. I point at a two-hundred bill I've remaining and claim I gave him another like this in addition to a thousand, which he initially denies. But within seconds he crumbles and gives me back the extra two-hundred Leks

On the phone.
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Shortly after leaving, the rain come on heavy and so, I make to the usual place for coffee. The girls working here mustn't get many foreigner, as they make a fuss over me every day I'm in; calling me by name "Shon" and practicing their English on me. Their language sounds good to listen to when they speak between themselves; like tweetering birds. It's supposedly extremely rare and is a kind of blend between Roman and Slavic.

The serious business of rain.
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This evening it's still raining away and, its hard to believe it'll have stopped by morning. Though looking at World Weather online, it is to rain through until daybreak. Then its a fair morning with sunny spells and patchy clouds. The cloud clearing completely by afternoon. And just to confirm, I check a second site which shows much the same picture. So tomorrow I'm off again.

I had to take this in a hurry.
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