Sunday, June 09, 2013

Sunday outing

After weeks of rain and sunshine yo-yoing back and forth every few hours, this Sunday we experienced a real summer day in Tirana. There was not a cloud in the sky and the sun was hot. Perfect day to be out of the city, where friends drove me for a relaxing midday dinner. 

  The restaurant, like many others that have sprung up in the rolling hills that make us the suburban areas around the capital, is situated in the commune of Ndroq, in the middle of a very agricultural zone, well laid out along a mature river.
From a country road one enters a very large complex that has a hotel-restaurant, a separate huge hall for large receptions, manicured green lawns interspersed with rose bushes and a variety of trees that include very old olive ones, with their crooked trunks distorted by age.
Attractive foot and vehicle paths allow for pleasant walks at different land level with beautiful views of the valley below, and above an entire aqua complex consisting of two large pools, one of them for children. 
There was no sparing of details in this entire place on the part of the owner, who gave us a tour when we took a walk around.   
Two gardeners were quietly attending to their chores, some clients were lulling around the pool, and the outside patios of the restaurant were filled to capacity by diners.  This country setting offers all sorts of comforts and is well equipped with modern facilities, and it pleases the eye everywhere you turn due to an excellent taste of furnishings, gardens layouts, and flower arrangements artistically positioned everywhere. 

Here I had the chance to taste different dishes, typical of the local cuisine. After an assortments of antipastos that included a mixture of grilled vegetables (which I love!), the waiters presented us with 2 varieties of poultry dishes. 
Actually, my friends explained, the meat came from small, not yet grown chickens (chicks!), raised on the premises, like all other foods used by the restaurant, all fresh  and delicious. One was roasted chicken over rice pilaf, while the other was baked  in a very thick sauce that can be soaked by hot, home made, soft bread.
Three hours went by quickly and we returned to Tirana by 5:30pm, a typical time for some rest in Albanian daily living. It was a very relaxing afternoon and now I am ready to tackle another busy week ahead!

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