We finally arrive in Slovenia, the country where my Dad was born, and I manage to contact my Uncle Flavio (Zio Flavio) two days before our arrival in the capital Ljubljana. After a gruelling 24 hour train ride from Sophia to Ljubljana (complete with a 6 hour wait in Belgrade) we are met with my Uncle's warm hugs and smiles. We is wearing a cap with the Maple Leaf and his car is proudly displaying the Canadian flag! We immediately start speaking in Italian, which is our only common language. The region of Slovenia that my family originates from is bilingual. They all speak . . .
Slovenian and Italian due to the close proximity to the Italian border although most of the younger generation speaks English also.
We are headed to Koper, a port city, on the coast which is about an hour and a half drive from Ljubljana. Before getting to my Uncle's house we stop at his partner Mary's home where she has prepared an excellent warm meal for us. This is blissful. We enjoy a home cooked meal and begin exchanging stories in three different languages, Slovenian (Mary only speaks Slovenian), Italian and English. It is getting late and it's time to leave, we say good night to Mary and Birch and Allegra excitedly thank her for the chocolate easter bunnies she presents to them. We finally arrive at my Uncles home and quickly make ourselves comfortable in our warm cozy beds!