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New Website, New Blog, but the Old Blog Archive remains: September 28, 2023

After many years of wanting a real website, this month I finally have a website designed by the very knowledgeable Rey Rey Rodriguez ( TheMindOfReyRey ). My old blog,  Vacation-Travel-Adventure  continues with the same address but it is located in the "Archives" tab on my new website . The new blog which is a continuation but with much better resolution for 4K screens, it is now at .

Day 4 - Sofia to Skopje: May 27, 2012

On our last day we visited Sofia's triangle of three religions: Jewish, Islamic, Orthodox Christian.

We went to the Jewish Synagogue that was closed yesterday.  It was also closed today. The Christian guard told us that it was a significant day in the Jewish faith; the reading of the Torah began last night and would continue for 24 hours. The exterior architecture is Moorish style.  Inside there is supposed to be a 2,000 kilo (4,400 lbs) chandelier. The inside can hold 1,300 people making it one of the largest synagogues in Europe.  The structure was completed in 1909.

The Banya Bashi Mosque (1576) is the only Muslim place of worship in Sofia that still serves that purpose.  All the other old mosques now serve as museums or in some other capacity.  The interior is not spectacular but it has been recently renovated with new Turkish tiles.  Behind the mosque is the site of the former mineral baths (banya).  They have been closed since 1986 and undergoing a slow renovation.

The last point of this religious triangle is Church of Sveta Nedelya.  A church has been on this site since at least the 10th century.  The current structure was rebuilt after a bomb blast destroyed most of the building in 1925.

We also happened upon the 13th century Church of Sveti Petka located in an underground shopping mall.  Petka Paraskeva was a 3rd century Christian girl from Asia Minor who was martyred during Emperor Diocletian's reign.  Diocletian created a lot of martyrs.  The entrance is through the tomb.

Monument to Sveta Sofia

The monument to Sveta Sofia (Holy Wisdom) stands on the spot once occupied by the sculpture of Lenin.  St. Sofia was erected in 2000.  She holds a laurel wreath (symbol of blessing) and an owl (representing knowledge) perches on her shoulder.

We had no problems re-entering Macedonia; we arrived in Skopje at 4:00 pm, unpacked, and packed Dan's suitcase to go to Washington DC.  He made a reservation for a taxi to pick him up at 2:45 a.m.  His mission is to pick up his work permit at the Macedonian Embassy in Washington DC.  We'll see.