24 November 2008


This is just what we do on our first full day in Bratislava. We give into the gods of jetlag and spend as much time as possible just getting the feel of the new environment and playing with our two little girls. This time the gods are smiling upon me--after 30+ hours of travel time, I just don't have jetlag. I slept through the night on Sunday without noticing the 7-hour time difference, waking up at a normal hour and feeling no sluggishness. Didn't even nap until 4:30pm, which might even be considered normal on a non-work, active day. Then, another uninterrupted night of sleep.

We rent a car this time. With Great Grandma here and two carseats, the Renault Kangoo doesn't contain us. Then, the Kangoo develops a blinking engine light, so we are down to one vehicle until Wednesday. MP, LG, KF, and I take the rental Fabia Skoda to IKEA and Avion--the nearest mall. We are on a mission to IKEA to get pillow forms for the sage green, soft corduroy pillow covers I sewed before coming. Mission accomplished with a fine result. At 3-1/2 LG is a world-class shopper, diving right in and quickly just one of the girls. Her reward is 30 minutes at the play area in Avion. 10-month KF climbs over the bunny and fish and has aspirations for the larger bear and mountain.

I broke a nail in a precarious spot--not that I'm so vain, but if this one proceeds as indicated I will be in pain. No surprises--nail polish was hard to find at Avion. Actually, impossible. Here each store is specific--pharmacies are for medications; perfumeries are as advertised. Even the Hypernova which offers clothing and kitchenware, books and baby-ware has no makeup-type goods. MP says we will have to find a make-up store. She misses Walgreens and Target--purveyors of all--even though she grew up here she has a strong appreciation for the convenience and economies of U.S. mega-marts.

Tomorrow we will go out early and visit the towns and villages bordering the northeastern edge of Bratislava. There are vineyards and wineries, mountains and plains, B&Bs and penzions. This area is a vacation destination for some. Just down the road is an infamous hot springs where the locals bathe sans clothing. Not a pretty sight. No matter the time of day there is always someone or two bathing. Nothing fancy here--a swimming hole in a field just off the road where you park in the weeds and venture forth. At night it is common to leave your headlights on for illumination. We boast about trying it out...

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