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May 16, 2012

While In Koper

Every week, our ship would dock in Koper, a coastal town in Slovenia, facing the Adriatic Sea. Koper is one of the main road entry points into Slovenia from Italy, which lies to the north of this large commercial port city. The first time I visited Koper, it was a sunny day and a perfect day to just wander around the meandering streets of the Old Town. It was a Sunday so I went inside the church and heard mass, in Croat. The cathedral was actually packed with mass goers. During the giving of the sign of peace, I was game in bowing my head and smiling around the people who were perhaps wondering how a brown man happened to be inside this Catholic Church filled with white folks.

After the mass, I went around the Old Town and took some pictures. I even bought a 2-euro slice of pizza for lunch. During my second visit, it was actually raining but I happened to visit one of the malls in Koper. I even happened to notice a Filipina with her son who smiled back at me as if with the understanding that we were both Filipinos. In Tagalog, she told her son, "Look, it's also a Filipino," while pointing at me. I didn't know whether I would be amused or feel like a monkey inside a cage in a zoo.

Koper is nonetheless a lovely and peaceful place. Their parks are clean and it is basically a place where you can enjoy the best of both worlds, old and new. Among the landmarks I visited in the Old Town was the Praetorian Palace which is actually right beside the Cathedral and the Loggia.

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