Nov 13th 2008 9:49PM >>> "Even that yielded some insights: the music seemed like a fusion of different traditions – Greek, Turkish – that showed how culturally set apart this place was to elsewhere in the Balkans."
Funny. Ever heard Greek folk music? it sounds a lot like Albanian, and they have no shame either to call their own. Their national costume is fustanella, 100% Albanian too. So maybe the Greek one sounds like Albanian, 'borrowed' from Albanian Arvanites (now hellenized)?
Did you see any Albanian houses burned by the Serbs? Some 40% of the Kosovo houses were destroyed, and not as war casualties, but on purpose. After 10,000 dead, rapes to terrorize the people into leaving, 800,000 expelled and destruction, sadly Albanians reacted when they got back.
BTW: "No to compromise" was regarding independence.
>>>"I didn't like feeling that this hospitality was some kind of payback rather than something that stood on its own."
Every nation has it's scum, and we have our share, but Albanians are supposed to be hospitable to strangers. You should read Kanuni i Lek Dukagjinit:
"The Kanun sets up very high standards for hospitality. "A man is answerable, too, for his guest, and must avenge a stranger that has passed but one night beneath his roof, if on his journey next day he be attacked. The sacredness of the guest is far-reaching" (Durham, c.32). The actual wording of the Kanun is somewhat dire, "if your hospitality is violated, the Kanun gives a choice of two paths: [potential] ruin or dishonor" (p.136). Also, "an offense against a father, a brother, and even a cousin without heirs may be forgiven, but an offense against a guest is not forgiven" (p. 136).
In her 1908 journeys Edith Durham also saw the other, more positive, side of the coin.
The old man asked if we had a roof for the night. "We are poor. Bread, salt, and our hearts is all we can offer, but you are welcome to stay as long as you wish." --end quote--
If you had done 0.5% of what Serbs did you would have seen the other side.