Days 53 – 56
It appears that somewhere along the way I have, once again, lost track of the number of days I’ve been on the move; I won’t say I’m shocked, as I’m not known for my mathematical abilities and, at times on this trip, it can be just to much effort to take my boots off in order to count properly.
It’s now day 56, I’m sat in Visoko, Bosnia, I’m at a really nice but small campsite on the banks of the river Bosna and, on looking up from my keyboard, I see the anomaly that is the Bosnian ‘Pyramid of the Sun’.
My last blog left me in the hostel in Zagreb and I will bring things up to date from there.
The morning after the night before, I left the city and headed towards the Croatian border with Bosnia. My plan was to get to the town of Zavidovici, where there are many large stone spheres for which it has been suggested by the Dr studying them, that they were made by an up to now forgotten & advanced civilisation.
Literally as I typed the last full stop above, my phone buzzed and it was a reply to a text that I had sent (thanks to the campsite owner), to the very Dr who is conducting the research on the Stone Spheres and also the Bosnian Pyramid. He has just invited me to join him tomorrow morning to tour the pyramid and the tunnels that run through it..!!! OMFG :0)
Stop press ends.
I was advised to head towards a City called Zenica, as this would allow me to visit the stone spheres and then, once done so, move easily to Visoko for the pyramid. As you move through northern to central Bosnia you can still see many signs of the war (20 years+ ago), with destroyed buildings just abandoned by their owners and completely new properties developed a short distance away. This intrigued me somewhat and a bit of research told that Bosnia is still a very heavily mined country and one particularly favourite trick was to boobytrap a lot of the abandoned houses in order to kill the residents should they ever return. This was eventually figured out so the houses were just left and life started again 40 meters away. The saying is ‘if the building looks like no one has been in it for 20 years, don’t go in’…..and there are a lot of them.
As I approached Zenica it felt as though I had been sent to one of the old Russian Gulag death camps, to see out my life in slave labour. It was an overcast day and the city is dominated by two huge decaying soviet style factories or power plants. I’m not sure if one of them was on fire or was just one of the smokiest industrial places ever to pollute the earth.
The city itself matched its colossal overlords, being old, grey and imposing. It looked a tough city; it looked like the kind of place where, if born here, your life was mapped out and you were not going anywhere else! There is a modest but modern shopping mall been built in the city centre (large Town is more apt), and this has become the heart of the city, with people going there to shop, socialise and I imagine attempt to forget, if only for a short period, the unfortunate location that fate landed them. I was booked into a hostel and to reach it walked through some blocks of flats which certainly did not strike me as the friendliest place for a stranger. I realise I may be completely wrong (in fact I probably am), but just in case, I dug out the Dave Mills who used to patrol the streets of Northern Ireland and just let him do the walking for me.
I left my main bergan in the room and with a packed day sack only, caught the bus for the hour Long drive to Zavidovici. It was a beautifully sunny day, which eased slightly the toughness of Zenica, and made the journey a pleasant one. On arrival I walked to the Northern of two sites which has stone spheres, and is imaginatively called the ‘Bosnian Stone Sphere park’.
Here is a hillside at which water erosion and landslides exposed a large number of stone spheres in one particular gully. They all range in size from half to a meter+ and there are currently roughly 20. There was originally 80 found in the early 1900’s but some have been swept away, some are now features in local gardens and many were smashed open in the 70’s when a rumour circulated that they were gold in the centre.
The Dr who studies them (who I’m now meeting tomorrow), believes they were made by a forgotten advanced civilisation, which populated the Balkans some time in the past couple of years. Mainstream archaeologist believe they are a natural phenomenon (I will say that it is hard to find a mainstream theorist who has actually been to the site or in anyway come into contact with the stones…..but obviously that doesn’t mean they are wrong…just arrogant).
In the afternoon I walked to the southern site which contains what is possibly the biggest stone sphere in the world. It’s again in a woods similar to the first site, but a switched on local has set up a little eco friendly hutted area and serves food and drink. I had a stunning meal whilst staring at the sphere and wondering just what its true history was.
I am currently writing up about the stones and this will appear on my forgotten past page within the next few days….I will let you know when it does.
Overall its been a great few days, I’m now into the vibe of Bosnia and its sharp edges have eased somewhat (same as everywhere), I’m really looking forward to the pyramid and all that it has to offer……is it a game changer???? We shall see.