Standing over the town square is the statue of Valentin Vodnik. I’ve heard the square in Ljubljana refered to as the Republic Square and also as the Vodnik square. Either way, he had his mark on Slovenian history supporting the use of the Slovene language during the occupation of Napoleon’s armies. After the French left, the Slovene language continued in use and is still spoken today.
To me, Slovenian sounded a bit Russian. All of the numbers 1-10 are the same as Russian (hey, I can count in Slovenian!) as are a great number of words. I think that I was told that about 1/2 of the language is shared with Russian. The people, at least some them, look Russian. During the big slavic migrations to the south of Europe (Balkans) in the 6th Century AD, the Slavic folks displace some of the indigenous population. But some stayed and mixed in and the population today – to my eye – appears to be a mix of Russian and southern European peoples (Italian, Roman, etc).
Well, our friend Vodnik was also a great poet, probably the most well-known poet in Slovenia and they’ve erected a nice statue of him at the foot of the castle, right in the town square. After I took his photo, I began to look around and saw that the market was in full swing; people were buying and selling produce and all other sorts of items that one finds at a market.
Sabina took this shot of me while we looked around in the market.
I’ve always thought that the fruit and vegetable stands in the market places made for some of the finest photos; the fruit and vegetables have such vibrant colors. This friendly man offered some produce and I do believe that we bought some bananas for the next morning’s breakfast.
I saw this couple walking and decided to get their shot. I did notice quite a few young couples together as they walked together. Ljubljana seemed to be a romantic city as there were so many couples walking arm in arm or holding hands. We lingered around the stalls and bought some souvenirs; post cards, a Ljubljana coffee mug, and some other “must have” tourist items. Despite the drizzly weather, the umbrellas provided ample protection and I really enjoyed exploring around.
Sabina took me to the local “fast food”; a fish stand that served seafood and wine. She took the liberty of ordering and I cannot remember fish that tasted so good. We had 3 kinds of fish and calamari - all heavy on the garlic – potatoes, beans, some tomatoes, and a glass of red wine. I cannot remember, in recent history, a better tasting lunch. The calamari and fish were seasoned to perfection and it really did taste wonderful. I did want to return again and again to this restaurant as the food tasted so wonderful.
The two local couples next to my table were chatting up a storm and while Sabina ordered the fish, I took a video of the nearby area to capture the sights and sounds of the market and fish stand.
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