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Arriving in Sarajevo, I was awestruck by the beauty of the city and the surrounding landscape. Many major cities are overwhelmed by concrete structures while city authorities attempt to create more greenery by adding a park or planting trees sporadically throughout the city. Here not only is the city enclosed by the greenery but the trees are a major component of the “urban” environment. Another inherent aspect of the city are the fountains that continuously flow and refresh the parched traveler. Whether a person cups water in their hand or uses a water bottle, no one seems bothered by the instrument that each person uses to consume this valuable resource.

Regardless of my location within the city, the local population has an awe-inspiring command of the English language. Even places where I wouldn’t expect the language to be used by the locals, their expressions are littered with the utilization of my native tongue. Although my Bosnian language skills are rudimentary at best, I attempt to interact with and respect their culture by using the few expressions that I currently possess. My incipient Bosnian has already proved extremely helpful in traveling the surrounding region and I hope that my continual usage will help me interact with various populations within the city that I may not have otherwise had an opportunity to converse with.

What I love is the food (as well as the corresponding prices!!) Burek is so delicious, especially the restaurant where this is cooked over a traditional oven with coals and metal plates — the staff is wonderful and very welcoming. Another inviting delight are the ubiquitious “sladoled” stands. This delectable snack is deceptive: it looks like ice cream but this is much smoother and tastes SO much better than just about everything my palate has been exposed to.  I can’t wait to try the other delicacies around town and experience the gastronomy of the Bosnian cuisine.

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