Trouble in Tirana

Well, our Air B and B experience here was even worse than in Zagreb.  We finally arrived in Tirana, Albania at about 9 in the evening, after a one hour wait at the border, and then getting stuck in traffic behind a herd of  cows, then a flock of sheep, and then a very slow moving truck. We had to follow that bastard  for about 30 kilometers of solid no  passing zone.
Still,  that should have been plenty of time.  We had booked the accommodation, but couldn’t reach the  host by phone, and there were no e-mail messages from him, either.  About 11 p.m., we started looking for a hotel.  The first 3 we tried were all full and the 4th couldn’t fit  us all  into one room, and it’s a really nice hotel so this  is setting us back 160 euros.  We’ve contacted booking.com, and we hope we don’t get charged, but still, it pisses me off.  If someone is  offering their room (and making a pretty  penny off it), they should at least answer the damned phone and show up  with  a key.
I don’t expect everybody  to leave  biscuits  in the room and provide us with detailed tourist  information on  the town, the way our last  hostess did, but answering the phone is sort of a minimum.
Outside of that, I am  quite  surprised at Tirana.  The rest of the country looks 3rd world, with sheep  in  the streets, geese in  the  garbage, and half built buildings everywhere, but Tirana is a modern city of bright lights and outdoor cafes.  A bit on  the garish side, actually.  Something between Paris and Las Vegas.

I’d heard there is  crime here, but plenty of people  are out walking around late at night and even though we felt inconvenienced, we never felt  endangered.  All the people we  asked for directions or information were helpful and friendly, and even the hotels which couldn’t fit  us  in were polite and sounded genuinely remorseful.
But the guy hosting that Air B and B room is a dick,  and he will  get a scathing review.

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