Shutka today ! A suburb of Skopje, it is Europe’s biggest Roma settlement, a proper little Roma town. The full name is Shuta Orizari.
We met up with the lead trumpet player of the Cherkezi Orchestra, Asan Rashid, who took us through the markets. Yes, I did have in mind buying some nice handcrafted Rom souvenirs, but what did I end up with: 2 stage outfits. Trying and choosing them resulted in a whole audience of spectators, gathering around the stalls, commenting on which styles suits me best, and then taking ‘promotion pics’ of me for their goods.
The blue one it is:
One of my new outfits is a mild one for smaller occasions, but the other one, well, it certainly will shock my musicians… and amazing device of some kind of trousers and a vest top made of generous amounts of burgundy satin and gold… Anyway, our new Roma colleague got the best prices out for me.
We also had the obligatory coffee and lemonade at some bars there, talked about music, and fixed a jam session/rehearsal for the next day, where some of his colleagues would join us.
My first impression of Shutka: I only saw the main road and the market, which looked like a busy road, not too different from some roads in East London.
The atmosphere was very lively and bubbly, and I only saw happy faces, open and friendly to us. Can’t wait to dive deeper into this place tomorrow…
One thing I really regret: I have not taken pictures ! Usually I photograph all and everything, but firstly, my camera broke, and I don’t like taking pix with my phone, AND when I’m so involved I forget to take pix…