Ljubljana is an ancient city. It sits inside a U-shaped bend of the river with a
castle on the hill and the old city along the river below. The old city is mostly
The first thing we did upon arrival was end up in prison. That is our cell. It is
about 7 feet by 12 feet in size with a 10 foot arched ceiling. (2 m by 4 m by 3 m)
At least we get to sleep together.
This is not as bad as it seems. The old prison from the 1898 army garrison has been
converted into a hostel. The garrison survived WW I & II. The garrison was torn down
but the prison building survived and even survived the Balkan war of 1990. It was
bought and converted into a hostel with the old cells as rooms. The rooms are still
small, the concrete walls about 18” (.5 m) thick so rooms are quiet and the bathroom
is down the hall, but the facilities are modern and the breakfast is good. The old
exercise yard is now the beer garden. And the beer is cheap, as it is all over town.
As a comparison gasoline is expensive. We are paying over 6 US dollars for a US gallon
when all the conversions are done from liters and Euros.
This is the outside now. They have secure parking on the far side for bicycles and
We wandered the old town and looked at the sights. The Dragon Bridge is famous .
There is one of these on each side at each end.
The farmer’s market was going strong.
The church had these bronze doors with (I think) Bishops on them.
We had coffee at an outdoor table. And again Europe is way ahead of the US in technology.
In the US the waiter takes your order and disappears, then eventually brings it.
At payment time he goes and gets the bill and walks it to you then after a while
he will come and take your money or credit card. He then disappears again, with your
credit card and then brings you your receipt to sign with a copy for you.
Here he does it all right in front of you. Takes the order on his phone-like pad
and it is ready by the time he gets inside. Then payment and receipt is all done
on the same machine, at the table, right in front of you. There is a receipt printer
on his left hip for a paper copy. There is no chance of you losing control of your
We saw similar superiority in technology even when we were here in our previous trips.
And the US thinks that because they invented some of this technology that they are
ahead of the world. The US needs to wake up and adapt to the changing scene. We had
our credit card number stolen once while the waiter had it in a restaurant at home.
A similarity between here and home (Portland,OR) is the amount of graffiti. The amount
of spray paint spread over the buildings, fences, and signs of the world is astounding.
A difference between here and home is lack of homeless looking persons. We have only
seen one person whom we would label “homeless”. At home they are everywhere, with
several thousand just in the Portland, OR area.. Their camps are prolific, large
and semi-permanent. The amount of stuff (junk) that is collected by the residents
of the camps is impressive. The city tries to do cleanup sweeps but it is too little,
too late. They are not “homeless”, they are only “address-less” and they are everywhere.
Well, off my soapbox and on to the next day. We visit the castle on the hill.
We rode the funicular up the hill. The castle has old parts and lots of remodeled
new parts for tourists.
The tower we climbed is peaking out on the left with the flags on it.
We walked to all the things to see and climbed the tower. This view is across the
keep and part of the city. Our prison (hostel) is near the tall gray building just
left of center.
The tower stairs were 6 revolutions from bottom to top. In a lower part of the castle
were the cells that were used from 1805 until 1895. Our prison was built in 1898.
It was built during a crime and punishment reformation and was a great improvement
for the prisoners. Life in prison was still terrible but improved over the castle
After the tour and a break at the cafe inside the keep we walked to the local brewery
“Union Brewing” and had lunch at their pub. Then it is back to our prison and finish
this page. We walked 5.7 km or 3.5 miles today. About the same as previous days here.
Tomorrow is a day off; we do laundry, rest and pack to leave on the following day.