An open day of „borjači“ (yards)

An open day of „borjači“ (yards)

I couldn’t say no for a kind invitation from Hostel Pliskovica in which they asked me to write a short note from the event in their village Pliskovica. There were clouds in the sky and a storm was coming up.

Open day of borjaci Karst region

At the open day of “borjači” in the village of Pliskovica peopleswept theiryard, hanged dogwoodbrushon “portone” (arched entrance to the yard)and let the doors wide-open for the visitors. Follow me to “Borjači”! In this way they present the life of people from the Karst region, their knowledge and craft products. They welcome the visitors with home-made wine, brandy, liqueurs and Karst cuisine delicacies. There were eight wineries which let doors wide opened to the visitors (Lovretovi, Vrabči, tourist farm Durcik, Županovi, Jphovi, Pr´ Vilkoti-Petelin, Kovečevi and Grižnikovi). Dogwood brooms in front of the open doors were inviting visitors to enter the Karst courtyard. On the courtyard Jphovi two locals from Rezija demonstrated traditional way of grinding knives and scissors. There were times when locals from Rezija were known far and wide as good and experienced repairers of knives, pots and umbrellas. Both of them were crowded with curious onlookers. During the process of sharpening knives and scissors on their stationary bicycles, they also explained how they used to earn a lot of money by repairing knives in Slovenian inns and villages.

I entered the basement and tried “vitovska grganja”. Wine was really good. The main happening took place in a youth hostel where visitors could visit 400 year old karst farmhouse Pr’Slamčevih and Pliskavica village. There were also an exhibition Extempore Pliskavica, creative workshop of dry and wet felting and domestic art products market (lavender dolls, natural soaps, wooden toys, products of felt wool, etc.). Young and a bit less young people were able to participate in a guided tour of the Pliska trail and played pastoral games like škrove, kikara, zemljo krast/steal the land, voukalca, mlin/mill and others. On Pocirje homestead where different art exhibitions were held (paintings of academic painter Nuša Lederer, art clocks of Leon Pangos) and presentation of making wooden sieves our taste buds profited by tasting karst honey, prosciutto, sipping a glass of teran, Teran liqueurand other karst brandies, cheese and other dairy products. Beautiful silk scarves, handbags and other art products were available on the homestead Slavkni.

I was observing a young-self-taught stone carver Jernej Bortolato in T’mškovi homestead and admiring his fantastic stone products. My attention was also attracted by Tomos mopeds (especially the yellow one with PTT sign), local orchestra, which attracted a large number of people in the yard of homestead Vrabiči, an oxen-drawn cart with basket of manure and a millstone to grind grain into flour on the homestead Jeričevi. Did you know that once women of Karst region used teran (wine) stone instead of a lemon? Some homesteads own rich ethnological collection of old bicycles and tools that were once used on the farms. Well, at L’ktvi homestead they quickly ran out of asparagus:) There were wooden products on display at Janezovi homestead and gobelin tapestry at Šircovi homestead. In each courtyard something was going on. Tickets for the open day of “borjači” were distributed in a form of tasting glass with the sheep Pliska as a symbol of Pliskovica village. The event was closed in the evening under pergola when they burned and replaced their used locally manufactured dogwood brooms for yard sweeping with the new ones. See you next year!