05.07.2013 - 05.07.2013 24 °C
It's impossible to do any country justice in only one day. Well, nearly. Vatican City comes to mind as a possible exception. Still, I'm pretty sure I'll be revisiting Slovakia someday. At least it's small. Anyways, we did what we could with the time we had, and had a skvelý day.
We visited Lake Liptovska Mara and took a stroll around it, along with a number of others due to the fact that today was a holiday in Slovakia. At the end of our walk, we found a long line of kiosks selling souvenirs, stuffed animals, and various other knickknacks. Mom assured me that the sheep plushie with a circumference of five feet would not, in fact, fit into my bag.
We had deliciously sour creamy Slovakian food for lunch. Abby and I had perogies (of course), and Mom and Dad had dumplings that were reminiscent of the spaetzle we tried in Austria. After eight months without perogies, Abby and I are probably going to eat them at every chance we get in the next few weeks.
Our next stop was Spiš Castle, the ruins of which are over 700 years old. They stretch out over four hectares, and are more impressive from the air than from the ground. A number of paragliders seemed to have figured this out, and were riding the breeze above the castle.
We spent a couple hours navigating the ruins and learning a bit about medieval life. Fun fact: did you know that it used to be common practice to eat two meals a day, not three? Also, here's a list of rules you should adhere to while attending a feast in the Middle Ages.
There was a group of street performers atop one of the stone towers, garbed in medieval clothing and showing off different weapons of the age. Due to our lack of Slovak, we didn't understand the monologues, but we got the gist of things. There were also a couple sword fights, and someone from the audience nearly got beheaded.
On our way back home, we stopped at a restaurant recommended to us by our hosts. It was packed with diners, and since we were still pretty full from lunch, we decided to skip dinner and the wait and get ice cream instead. Sitting in the shade on a hot July evening in Slovakia with dessert in hand is not at all a bad way to end a day.