Albanian culture in Bari
Bari is one of Italy's gateways to Albania with Durres being one of the key destinations from its port. One of the interesting things about coming to this city, then, is spotting signs in the unusual Albanian language and hearing it spoken in the streets and parks. Of the ships that ply between Bari and Durres, some 90 per cent of the passengers are Albanians giving some idea of how many pass through or stay here.
As well as tourist information and shops signs, I saw this commemorative sign on Corso Vittorio Emanuele. Written in Albanian on one side and Italian on the other, it remembers the assassination of Albanian 'writter and patriot' Luigj Gurakuqj in the city in 1925. Gurakuqj was involved in Albania's movement for independence and killed by his own cousin, a member of the Zogu regime. An interesting and even intriguing slice of history and not one I saw in any book about Bari. It goes to show the city's long connection to Albania, just hours away across the water.