Finally set foot in Pristina this afternoon. One would think they were rebuilding a city entirely from scratch…the roads leading to the city are lined with construction materials…modest brick houses often appear, mostly unfinished. I can’t understand the signs, but that short ride was enough for me to know that coffee is a staple of the land…I am very pleased. After trying one at an adorable, new cafe outside the city I was even more pleased. There I met some of the board members of the KWN…loud, smiling, laughing women mixing a little business and pleasure.
As for the city, satellite dishes dot every house and building. Something about it reminds me of Latin America…the little stores lined with paper flyers, dusty streets, bumpy roads, dilapidated buildings next to newer ones, many in the process of construction. Everyone is out and about, walking the streets…evidence of the appalling unemployment (60%) that still plagues Kosovo.
UN cars block streets and crowd the sidewalks. There is definitely some tension in their relationship to the local people. There are marked differences between their living quarters and everyone else’s. Their modern looking apartment buildings stand out in a city that seems frozen in the communist period…the Cuba of Eastern Europe. Even so, people seem good natured, friendly and optimistic.
Posted By Claudia Zambra (Kosovo)
Posted Jun 12th, 2003