I love the Albanian countryside. It is such a riveting combination of wild and serene.
Last time we trekked through the rugged hills far outside Tirana admiring mule trains and shepherds guiding their sheep along narrow mountain paths.
Today we’re in a valley, driving along a turquoise river lined with towering trees and meadows of wildflowers.
I couldn’t help but smile when I saw this dog emerge from the woods to drink deeply of cool river water.
I would’ve loved to have a flotilla of inner tubes at the ready to toss into the river and bob along with my feet in the water and the sun on my face.
The fields of wildflowers were exquisite. Great swathes of purple and white in a sea of green under a blue, blue sky.
It took a second glance to notice the pill box nearly hidden by the tall grass.
It was one of thousands we would see as we got closer to the Albania/Greece border. Stark evidence of conflicts that have raged for years.
It’s hard to imagine bloody battles and scared soldiers when the sun is shining and birds are singing as they flit through the trees.
I’m so glad there is at least a semblance of peace now. Deeply rooted prejudices and grievances may still linger in many hearts on both sides of the border, but for now at least, the shooting has stopped.
And that is something to celebrate.
“May today there be peace within.
May you trust that you are exactly where you are meant to be.
May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith in yourself and others.
May you use the gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given to you.
May you be content with yourself just the way you are.
Let this knowledge settle into your bones,
and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love.
It is there for each and every one of us.”
– Mother Theresa -
Wish you much peace today.