It’s definitely a positive sign that there’s construction going on all over Shkoder. Development in progress, right?! I can already tell the roads will ook beautiful when they’re finished…but in the meantime I’m living in the middle of a giant construction site. At first I was a little shocked by the lack of protection and safety measures; and then I remembered that I’m in Albania and not America. The workers are wearing everyday clothing. The man with the welder has no sort of face mask on and people are walking right through the sparks to pass by.
There aren’t any restrictions on people using the streets that are under construction. The man on the big forklift will even wait for you to pass under the crane on your bike before he spins the vehicle and picks up his next load. It’s super casual, and super off-putting for an American used to rules, regulations, and law suits.
The other day I actually walked across a shaky plank of wood that was covered a whole in the street about 6′ deep and 7′ long. What can I say, it was the only way through. The construction men even waved me along like I was the crazy one when I looked at them with terror in my eyes. So I took a deep breath and quickly shuffled across the make-shift bridge as it bent and swayed. But every day I’m getting more and more used to trekking through construction sites to get to the grocery store, my school, restaurants, or anywhere really. I can’t help but think how shocked these people would be with the consequences of waltzing down the street through a construction site in America.
“It’s not better. It’s not worse. It’s just different.”