I'm on my last stop before I go home, and I'm actually pleasntly surprised with Albania and it's beauty. My hotel is called the Hotel Airport Tirana, and, after extensive research, I am sure that it is the best one in Tirana. As you might have guessed, it's right next to the airport and as soon as I got in last night, I grabbed my suitcase and as I was preparing to call a taxi, a limo drove up. A limo! The driver said that no guest of the Hotel Airport Tirana would be riding a taxi at ten o'clock at night. It was so nice! When I got to the hotel, I almost couldn't believe my tired eyes. This place was built like a military base, architecturally speaking, but there was also a kind of relaxing vibe to the place. That vibe increased by ten when I went inside. This was one of the fancier hotels on my trip, and I'm sure it was easy to tell that by my face. I think my jaw must've been on the floor. And if it was on the floor when I saw the marble-floored lobby and spacious halls, then I guess I lost it entirely when I saw my room. It was carpeted with lush, blue carpeting and there were heavy gold curtains lining the picturesque windows. I had a waterbed that sank below the surface of the floor. There was a small kitchenette and a clean bathroom, but the best part was the balcony. There was a pair of glass doors hiding behind the gold curtains. I opened them almost apprehensively, and what my tired eyes saw is something I will remember for the rest of my life. The blcony was huge! It spread the length of my entire suite, and it stuck out of the hotel as far as my deck sticks out of my house! The edge of the balcony was decorated by a black wrought iron fence, and the whole thing was scattered with lawn chairs. Anyway, I went to sleep in my beautiful bed, and woke up early-5:30. I made a quick breakfast out of a compimentary muffin basket in my kitchenette, and now for my last day of tourism! Why the early morning trip? I was going on a cable car ride to the top of Mt. Dajti, and in Colorado, if you want to appreciate natural beauty, you have to see the sun rise over it. The company that ran the cable cars had a special early morning journey, and I planned to make that ride. This was going t0o be good. It was a quick ride, and in minutes we were at the sight of the cars. I made it, but just barely. On the car, it was pitch black. I wasn't worried, I would have plenty of time to see the sights on the way down. The ride was only abou 15 minutes, and soon I was at the top. It was still dark, but I could feel it coming. Apparantly, so could everyone else because as it got closer, a hushed silence fell over the crowd. The whispering, giggling and yawning grew more and more infrequent until they stopped all together. Of course, I didn't notice any of this until later. For the time being, I was zoned in on the horizon. The sun came like an ocean wave, breaking the silence that had settled over the crowd. It seemed like it had only been a few seconds, but when I checked my watch, it was already 8:00! I bought a walking stick in the gift shop for my dad, and we all filed back onto the cable cars. Now, I could really appreciate the views. It was actually a very beautiful mountain. You could see the buildings of the city and the green of the trees rivaled that of Colorado's! Back at the bottom, I decided to try to stick to my plan for once and went to the Archeological Museum. It may sound lame, but this one was actually pretty interesting. They didn't have a lot on display, but what they did have was really kind of cool. I saw glass vases from Roman times, which surprisingly were very beautiful and in good condition too! Another thing that I thought was cool was the Roman swords and tols that they used in the Hellenistic period. They were made mostly of bronze which is very pretty even if it's old and dirty. My favorite thing there was the pieces of a bronze memorial statue that was set up in ancient Rome. The museum was great, but I knew I could spend hours there. Hours that I didn't have. But I still had some time to kill so I grabbed my laptop and browsed around trusty tripadvisor.com. This led me to the Peace Bell. Apparantly, it was made from bullets and shells that were found on the streets after riots and such things. After seeing it, I can say that while a tragic story of loss, patriotism and bravery, it really isn't all that interesting to look at. It is small, beat up and it's concrete backgroung is full of grafitti. Maybe it was worth seeing as the story was inspiring. After the bell, I went to the day's main event, PUPPET SHOW!!!!! You may think that this is stupid, but this was a very cultural thing to do. The show is completely in Albanian and...well....ummmm.....they're serving food okay? The show was really cute. I didn't understand any of the dialogue, but it was mostly action anyway. The funniest thing about the show was that there were a bunch of old women and men in fancy dresses and suits watching it! They had opera glasses and everything! I guess they really take thir puppet shows seriously. Lunch was definitely the main event. It was takeout from a place called Sofra e Aniut. The servers were all wearing traditional Albanian clothes and the food was on treys so it didn't have that styrofoam or plastic taste. I had some tomatoes in vinegar (bring your own salt), some verbland chicken(ketchup, hot sauce, anythng?!?!?!?) and finally some Creme caramel(the only good thing there has to be amazing doesn't it?) Albania isn't known for it's food. The puppet show was fun, and afterwards I was worn out. That brings us to right now, on my hotel couch, watching TV and blogging.