Late afternoon light reflecting off the Kamnik Alps north of Ljubljana

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Not quite, but pretty close.

These were all all snapped late yesterday afternoon just before sunset from the rooftop terrace at the Kavarna Nebotičnik, or Skyscraper Cafe, in the Slovenian capital’s city center. Above is the view due north towards the Kamnik Alps that form the border with Austria. Below is a shot of castle hill and its 15th century fortress, east/southeast from the Nebotičnik.

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At 13 stories high, the Nebotičnik isn’t everyone’s idea of a skyscraper, but when construction was completed in 1933, it was the tallest building in the Balkans and the ninth highest in Europe. At 70.35m (231ft) it’s now the fourth tallest building in Ljubljana and in Slovenia, affording terrific views in all directions.

A few more shots. These first two continue eastward from the Alps shot at top.

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Next up we continue to the southeast from the castle towards the Ljubljana Moors, the southernmost wetlands in Europe.

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Above due east and below east/northeast with Roznik hill and Tivoli Park in the distance.

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And finally, above, back to where we started, but obviously, not in chronological order.

Let there be light was the headline for this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge, the exact word that a friend uttered when the violet rays began hitting the mountains. That’s a good enough connection for me.



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Azram’s Blue Fish

Azram’s Blue Fish – LJ Pic of the Day

Today’s Ljubljana Daily Pic reminded me of a fish. Maybe that’s because I read another story yesterday morning about the high levels of radiation in Pacific blue fin tuna thanks to Fukushima. If it’s not, my sincerest apologies. In any case, it’s a great mural, spotted in the railroad underpass on Kajuhova Street, not far from the nightmarish BTC shopping center sprawl.

Azram is fairly ubiquitous around the Slovenian capital. If you’re not up to searching the streets, you can find more on his/her flickr page here. Or check out this album on my Facebook page, the second in my almost daily ‘About town’ series, which includes a few more of his/her works along with a handful of unrelated mobile phone pics all taken yesterday afternoon.

Gradisce Street, Ljubljana

My Favorite Street in Ljubljana – LJ Pic of the Day

One of them anyway. It’s definitely on the short list.

Today’s pic of the day from the Slovenian capital is this snap of Gradišče, a small dead-end street located just behind the Slovene National Theatre-Drama Ljubljana. It’s in the heart of the city center, but very quiet, with little traffic. It’s the way the architecture comes alive that I find most appealing. There are stories, a breathing history of the city, layered in each of those exposed exteriors, slightly cracked windowsills and patchy facades, witnessed by the three wreath-bearing cherubs, their heads so admiringly shielded from the elements and the birds.

Speaking of drama and favorites – marginally related is today’s WordPress Daily Prompt, asking us to respond to the same ten questions James Lipton always poses to his guests on his show Inside the Actors Studio, most of them sharing variations on the theme of favorite. I’ve got 15 minutes to get my next film screenings today, so no time to dawdle or reflect:

What is your favorite word?

What is your least favorite word?

What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally?

What turns you off?
Racism, greed and self-absorption.

What is your favorite curse word?
Pizda. (That’s Slovenian.)

What sound or noise do you love?
A violin, for one.

What sound or noise do you hate?
A sorrowful cry.

What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?
An artist, as in painter.

What profession would you not like to do?
Public toilet cleaner. To them, my utmost respect.

If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates?
Thanks for trying your best to make the world suck less.

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Caligula in Ljubljana – LJ Pic of the Day

Today’s pic of the day –the tenth (!) straight in the project’s latest run– is quite likely the goriest poster you’ll find in the Slovenian capital these days: this one announcing the Slovenian National Theater’s upcoming production of Albert Camus’ Caligula.

The ketchup-covered ruler? Noted Slovenian actor Marko Mandić. Poster design by Danijela Grgič.

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Audrey Hepburn in Ljubljana – LJ Pic of the Day


Cool spelling of the names, no?

This ninth straight Ljubljana Pic of the Day is a display at Kinodvor, one of the city’s ‘art house’ theaters, which this year is celebrating its 90th anniversary. It’s also one of the host venues for the Ljubljana International Film Festival, which today was on day two. I attended three screeenings today; reviews tomorrow, as promised. I promise. :)

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For the Next 12 Days, a Focus on Film and LIFFe

LIFFe is the Ljubljana International Film Festival whose 24th edition kicks off today here in the Slovenian capital. I’m armed and ready with 24 tickets* –with a bit of a cushion in the schedule to squeeze in a few more should the mood hit– which explains where my focus and that of Piran Café will be for the next 12 days.

I’ll be publishing a daily summary with reviews and notes here, and more frequent postings on Piran Cafe’s Facebook page. If you’re not already a page fan, please do check it out.

I’ll be starting things off later this afternoon with Big Sur, director Michael Polish’s adaptation of Jack Kerouac’s autobiographical novel of the same name that chronicles, according to the program notes, the Beat scribe’s steep self-destructive descent towards mental breakdown. (Yeah, I know, an uplifting intro.) I’ll be finishing with Leviathan, which several pre-fest stories have short-listed as one of the best films of the festival. From the promo:

An innovative, unorthodox documentary film set aboard a hulking fishing vessel as it navigates the treacherous waves off the New England coast…

.. Unlike anything you have ever seen: entirely dialogue-free, a purely visceral, cinematic experience.

That’s what I’m hoping to find a lot of over the next dozen days. In the meantime, I’ll still be keeping up with other things here, including trudging onwards with work on my South America trip manuscript and with the LJ Pic of the Day project. I’ll be a little slow with emails and comment replies, and for that I apologize in advance. Feedback, critiques (and shares) always welcome. Enjoy!

*Three of those 24 tickets are for the short film competition screenings which collectively include 16 films, so my actual total is 37 films.
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Faces of the BRICS – LJ Pics du Jour

That’s the name of an exhibit now on display at Ljubljana’s City Hall through –tomorrow, 6 November. My apologies for the short notice, but I only came across it today.

BRICS is the acronym coined more than a decade ago for the planet’s rising economic powers –Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. Actually, it was BRIC until 2010 when South Africa was included in the association. Together they represent almost three billion people.

The photos were nice to look at but I was a bit disappointed by the title, which suggested portraits. On this rainy early afternoon, I was in the mood for portraits.

The rest of the selection, plus a couple of shots to give you an idea of what one of the atria in Ljubljana’s 15th Century City Hall likes like, below.

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