Our PhotoHunt theme for today is SAD. Don't you think empty, unloved buildings are sad? All across the holiday playgrounds of the former Soviet Bloc are huge abandoned concrete resorts. Places where the party insiders went to be pampered and to take advantage of their "little more equal than most" status.
Hotel Fjord, on the Bay of Kotor in Montenegro is one of those places. The locals say that in its day it hosted Brezhnev, Gorbachev, Yeltsin and even Putin when he was a mid-level KGB operative.
Even in their hay-day, these hulking souless grey buildings were ugly. But now that they have no priviliged KGB and Politburo Bosses as guests, they seem to brood.
This view is from our apartment window across the bay. It gives you an idea of how enormous the place is. Someone told us that an Irish company purchased it in 2006 amid much fanfare. They promised to refurbish it and turn it into a 4 Star resort. But, they still haven't done anything.
In the meantime, it deteriorates rapidly. The paving stones on the huge patios are being pulled up and carted off by locals to use in their gardens and driveways.
The four outdoor dining areas serve nothing but weeds now. But, the tennis courts are still in pretty good shape, and the locals have opened a hole in the fence so they can crawl through and use them.
The swimming pool is empty and cracked, but the waterfront platform next to the bay is used by locals for free swimming. They carefully pick their way through the rubble and broken glass to get to the edge.
Parked around the building are a dozen old beat up Yugos. All black. They look like someone just lined them up and walked away. Strange.
Across the street is a small shanty town we were told was populated by "gypsy" immigrants who were squaters. The owner of the land doesn't need it so they are allowed to remain without harrassement.
Even in the most beautiful and idyllic settings sadness can be found.