We stopped in the small village of Këlcyrë to do a quick hike up to the local castle. I was pretty hungry by this point (and in need of something to drink) so we went to a restaurant where, of course, Adam knew just about everyone. Adam lived in Përmet for two years and would often do work in Këlcyrë as well. After sharing 2 chickens, a salad, some bread, and some of the best fries ever, we looked outside and noticed it was pouring rain. So we ordered another drink. Halfway through, it quit raining, but by the time we had finished, it had started again, so we decided to suck it up and go for our hike in the rain. Along the way, Robert stopped to buy himself a very nice umbrella at a small local market. The hike up started fairly easy, and there were enough switchback that we were able to make it up the mountainside, and to the castle without any major issues. Along the way we pointed out all the shoes we found, and wondered to ourselves why there was so much trash on the trail to a deserted castle.
The next 20 minutes was spent exploring, climbing on, and probably ruining the castle. Part way through our explorations my camera decided to stop working (I assume due to an extreme amount of moisture) and overall there wasn't much to see, so we headed back down to continue our journey to Permet. The trip down was a bit more difficult. Firstly Mr. Robert's newly purchased umbrella was shed into pieces by the wind. Then we decided to take a "shortcut" or more better phrased as a fun slippery slide down a muddy mountain. Eventually, we made it down and after Robert showed the people at the store his umbrella they were kind enough to give him a new one for free :)
Our next stop was just a short cab ride, on a partially finished road, away. Upon reaching Permet and Adam's in-law's apartment we were very kindly and warmly greeted by his mother in law. She quickly offered us some candied walnuts (so sweet and good) some candied oranges, some dried plums, and walnuts, almonds and hazelnuts, along with some champagne. Adam translated all of her questions and our answers about where were from, and our families. She just kept bringing out more items until we couldn't handle anymore. She agreed to meet us for dinner at her sister or brother's restaurant at 7 and we headed out for an evening coffee at one of Adams favorite places. The reason we decided to go there was because they have 50 lek (50 cent) hot chocolate. I quickly took advantage of the situation and ordered a hot chocolate and an espresso and poured one into the other. I love black coffee, but every once in awhile I enjoy a mocha. It is impossible to find a place that serves them, so you just have to make them on your own.
|Homemade wine, which was delicious.|
|Waterfall with trash.|
|Arches overlooking the gravestones.|
|Our lunching area plus some of the fresco|
Adam went to go ask the key holder to let us in, while the rest of us explored the gorgeous fresco on the outside of the church. The plaster the fresco was painted on covered some very interesting stone, and I like to marvel at how old this stone probably was, considering how old the fresco on top of it was. Insane!
|Door with the peeled back Fresco revealing the very old rock.|
|skylight and beautiful paintings.|
|Our first furgon ride!|
|The gross package on top of my bag....|
You can play this song at my funeral, as you dance around me while enjoying some IPA. The thought that came to my head while I was scared of dying in a furgon crash on the way home: "I don't want no one to mourn beside my grave."