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  • Writer's picture Kester Eddy

Jeruzalem, Slovenia - a hamlet of history

An April Fool's Day discovery from 2005

Photo: The view from Jeruzalem - looking south. The nearby church is in the hamlet of Svetinje, the hills in the far background are across the River Drava, in northern Croatia. This pic is from a later visit, in 2007.

April 1st, 2005 was a Friday. I remember it well. Spring was springing, and I had to go to Slovenia for the Financial Times 'survey' – a four-page supplement. 'Proper' work, interviews with economists and the like, would start on the Monday, but I'd managed to arrange, via some scrambled emails, to visit an area known in the vernacular as Prlekija.

Not far over the Hungarian border, tucked in between the Mura and Drava rivers, and with the Croatian border to the south and east, the southern part of Prlekija, at least back then, was truly worthy of that otherwise hackneyed term 'hidden gem'. Its centre point, a tiny hamlet named Jeruzalem - a location, despite its name, that I later discovered was unknown to many Slovenes. 

But rather than retell the tale, I found a copy of a story that I did for Business Hungary magazine on the Slovenia For Families website, run by Ian and Louise Samuel. Hvala lepa for saving this story, Louise - because I don't have a hard copy myself, alas.

Addendum: There are a couple of corrections to make in this story - I see now - Milan Hlebec's wife is Vera (not Vida) and (horror of horrors) the Šipon grape is the Slovenian name for Furmint (not Welch Riesling). I'll be lucky to be allowed back in Jeruzalem for that clanger, but I suppose I must have been drinking when I wrote it.

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