Unlike high schoolers in the USA, out here in the rest of the world, one sometimes has to travel to a different city or even country to take the SAT test for college. The nearest test for this cycle was in Mostar. So instead of making a 2-3 hour drive first thing this morning and then actually finding the test site before 8 am, we opted to drive to Mostar on Friday evening and spent the night. This ends up making it rather expensive for just a test, so while Shelby and a friend of Carl and hers took the test, Carl, Elesa and I took the opportunity and a little time to check out the surrounding areas and enjoy the sunshine and fresh air (neither of which is available on any regular basis in Sarajevo this time of year). At this point, we've seen Mostar enough and we will end up back at some point anyway.
First we drove about 30 minutes or so to Hutovo blato, a bird sanctuary. We were pretty disappointed...in our minds we were comparing it to Australia's Kakadu Yellow Water and Guatemala's Monterrico Biotopo. No such luck...3 domestic looking goose things and a glimpse of some type of raptor, maybe a Short-toed eagle???
Then we went to spend some time walking around Počitelj. Along the way, we came across an interesting old bridge similar in design to the very famous bridge in Mostar, and I stopped to take a couple photos. I'm sure one of which will someday make it here (especially once I remember the name and some of the details:)
Počitelj is an interesting looking old town built into the side of a hill. The first thing you notice is the castle/fort that sits up high on the edge of a cliff. It also has a neat bell/clock tower (minus the clock and bell). The town was heavily damaged during war and it is still undergoing a lot of reconstruction (although, according to the plaque, the bell and clock were long gone years before). There were men repairing a stone roof today. According to our Bradt guide book and a lot of web sites, including some decent Bosnia-Herzegovina ones such as this, Počitelj is on the UNESCO World Heritage List. However, when I go to the list itself, I can find no such reference. So I'm left wondering...are all those other sources wrong? is the UNESCO World Heritage site wrong or not up to date? Was it taken off the list? Has it applied to the be on the list and not been officially added yet? I mean what is the deal?
Here is a typical postcard shot that I took. The clock tower is in the foreground on the left and the fort (Sahat-kula), dominates the background up on the cliff. Also making a small appearance, the minaret of Hadzi-Alija Mosque on the right and a dome of the Sisman-Ibrahimpasina medresa in the lower left corner.
Oh, and Shelby reports that she thinks she did especially well on the math portion of the test...