Is this Macedonia?
As I crossed the border from Albania to Macedonia, I kept a careful eye on the signs. The republic of Macedonia is the country I’m aiming for, but there is also a region of adjacent Greece which claims the name Macedonia. To make things more complicated, the republic changed its name to North Macedonia just a month ago, which likely has not been updated in road signs and maps yet.
Macedonia was once an ancient kingdom of great importance. During the reign of Alexander the Great 2300 years ago, his empire was the most powerful in the world, ranging all the way to the Indus river. In 168 BC the Macedonian monarchs were replaced by Roman rulers. Later decades saw the rise of Ottoman dominion as well as the formation of Yugoslavia.
I later stood beside the statue of Alexander at Plostad Makedonija, the central square of Skopje, trying to absorb as much as possible of the ambience. I tried to envision all the people who has come and went by this very place.