Angèle i Marie are not tourists, they are travellers and volunteers. Two young French women set of on their journey 2018. in March. First stop after France was in Greece where their hosts were an elderly Swiss couple residing in Greece for decades. After Greece, through Albania and Montenegro, they visited Croatia, Dubrovnik to be precise, went to Bosnia and Herzegovina, and came back to Croatia. They visited the town of Split, took the ferry across to the island of Brac and spent the last month there. In all those journeys, they managed to visit the island of Hvar and cities Zagreb and Samobor. While I’m writing this, Angèle i Marie are travelling through Slovenia. The plan is to be back in France in a week, find an apartment in Paris and get a job.
Angèle is a Law and International Relations graduate and Marie has graduated in Literature. Both love vegetarian food, music, good company and travel, and ecology is one of their main topics because, as Angèle says: “The planet can’t wait for people to become eco-aware by themselves, that awareness has to be built.”
Two lovely young girls, intellectuals, fluent in English, none of them have long, varnished nails. The secret to their travels is, exactly, in their hands, and the internet. After finishing college, the girls decided to travel the whole Balkan area and do volunteer work. They searched the internet for approximate locations in need of volunteers. The length of their stay in a particular location was determined by interesting contents the place had to offer. After they explored it to the maximum, again they searched the internet and went to the next location. Most of the expenses of their impressive journey were compensated by volunteering, from house-keeping, babysitting to agricultural labor, they even helped clear the areas in the island of Brac that were destroyed by wildfires and aided in building firebreaks (gaps in vegetation that act like barriers to slow or stop wildfires). Almost half a year of impressive travel is behind them, and the only unpleasant experience they’ve had is a flat tire.
Croatia is suffering from a big lack of seasonal work-force during summers and young people have a strong wish to travel with a lack of financial possibilities to fulfill that need. Angèle and Marie say they had plenty of time to have fun and explore the countries they visited, because their daily chores lasted for four to five hours, so they could manage everything. With their way of life and ecological awareness they have enriched each place they visited, and they are absolutely right when they say they are not tourists. They are travelers and volunteers. We wish them a happy return to Paris. Maybe, when they settle down, we will find out more about their six months in the Balkans, preferably in detail.
English translation Nike Komnenić, txt&foto VK, 13.8.2018.