by Francesca Lori

I first bumped into Trubarjeva street in the summer of 2017, as an Italian tourist visiting Ljubljana. I remember ending up on this street totally by chance, as many of the owners and small entrepreneurs of the street would say. And I remember I kept walking it back and forth, in a midst of comforting incredulity.

I couldn’t understand how the severity of the Dragon Bridge and the contained magnificence of Prešeren Square could be so distant -yet, so physically close- to this peculiar street from the bohemian vibe; this street which was greeting me with its graffiti, its small boutiques, the blues music coming from the old record shop and the penetrating smells of world cuisines.

Almost two years later, and I find myself in Ljubljana again, no longer a tourist, but a resident. Almost two years later, and I keep walking back and forth Trubarjeva, as it became the street that leads me to the APIS Institute, the organization where I work and volunteer. And it’s through the APIS Institute, and more precisely, thanks to one of its projects, that I came to know Trubarjeva and its people better.

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At the APIS Institute I met with Neva and Ela, two fantastic girls with whom I share the passion for music and, as it came out during our gatherings, a tendency to deep and introspective conversations. Our respective connections to the street were interestingly diverse. If my attraction to Trubarjeva was very fresh and mainly due to a sense of curiosity, to Ela Trubarjeva is the street where she spent part of her childhood, when the places we see today looked different or were not even there, yet. Whereas what draws Neva to Trubarjeva is the feeling of being part of something bigger, of a melting pot of different cultures, identities, and mindsets all finding their pace in the relaxed rhythm of the street.

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However, what we all had in common was the desire to get a deeper understanding and knowledge of the street and its people.

Also, our shared love for the unique spirit it radiates, and the awareness of the upcoming renovation, made us wonder how much of that spirit would fade into the polished, neat and tidy Ljubljana we all know. And, above all, what did the people of Trubarjeva think the renovation would bring? What were their expectations (if not fears), their perceptions?

So, we decided to answer these and many more other questions by going directly to the source. We put down a list of some of the representative places of Trubarjeva, those places that catch your eye when you pass by them, or, rather, those places you would not even notice but have been witnessing the infinite changes of Trubarjeva for more than a decade. We visited them, and we posed our questions to them.

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So, we got the chance to see Trubarjeva as the street where creativity happens in the most unexpected places. Like in Dežnik, few square metres where Marija Lah built her own magic world and old umbrellas are brought back to new life, even in the form of bags or lamps.

We found out that Trubarjeva is the street where cultures dance together and passions turn into reality.

Like in Libanonske Meze in drugi užitki, where Alja Hafner Taha realized her vision to represent hospitality through cuisine in a restaurant whose space gracefully combines Middle Eastern vibrancy with accents of Western minimalism.

We had the pleasure to hear the stories of Hana Shaar, of Jaka “Prijatelj” and we are planning to hear many more. As part of the team of “Solidarity Trubarjeva”, a project funded under the European Solidarity Corps, we have been offered the opportunity to see Trubarjeva through the eyes of the small entrepreneurs, restaurant, shop and business owners who populate and make the Trubarjeva we all know. And to share their pieces of Trubarjeva, we will also resort to the space offered by the blog of “Trubarjeva na Dlani”/ “Trubarjeva at Your Fingertips”.

 

Learn more about the people and places of Trubarjeva by following “Trubarjeva at Your Fingertips” facebook page and website trubarjevanadlani.eu!

 

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The article and the video were produced in the frame of  the “Trubarjeva Solidarity” project implemented by APIS Institute.

Trubarjeva Solidarity” project was co-funded by the European Commission under the European Solidarity Corps programme.

The European Commission and ESC National Agency MOVIT support does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflect the views only of the authors, and the commission and MOVIT can not be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.