Plop! Plop! went the bubbles as both children and adults went aiming for the perfect and imperfect spheres that drifted in the light summer air near Lake Bled. I fixed my gaze upon a colourful bubble and watched it collide with smaller ones till it increased in volume and floated higher and higher making its way towards the turquoise blue waters of the shimmering lake. I walked right into the many coloured reflections, bursting some along the way to give a dime to the creator of such a jubilant spectacle. I was drawn to one particular bubble that slowly rose and circled in the air, creating patterns that resembled an ancient runic language. Strangely enough, it knew its way up to the Bled castle; it led the way and I followed.
The story of Bled is the story of perfection. It is a manifestation of one of those rare yet special occurrences when man and nature are in blissful harmony with one another. Abound in grace, charm and natural beauty, the picturesque landscape has kindled the imagination of Slovenians for centuries. The myths and legends that arise from a scenery so heavily inspired by the mountains, the conifers and the tranquil lake – are a joy to listen, to compose, to recite.
The faeries in the olden days, hid in woods and came out to play. Dance and sing in Bled's meadows green, when the earth was lit in golden rays. Nimble and light they danced on and on, round in circles from night till dawn. Till the sun's first ray coloured the skies in blue and once morning broke, away they flew.
The shepherds with their flocks at morn, came to Bled to idle and graze; And the sheep gnawed at the carpet green till not a blade of grass was seen. This they did for many a year, till the flowers drooped and the roots were bare. Soon, the earth grew dark and cold and the tale of Bled was never heard or told.
The faeries mourned and cried in despair, at the loss of their land and fate so unfair. They pleaded with the shepherds there and hoped that they would atone and care. But the shepherds had heavy hearts of stone and would neither amend nor their sins atone; The lamentations grew loud and wild; Bled needed a saviour so that it could survive.
Skilled in ancient charms and spells, the faeries called on the springs and wells, To flood the island with streams and brooks and cover the land where Bled once stood. All was lost and all was drowned, except for a mound where faeries held their ground. A lonely island stood amidst the waters clear; here, faeries lived and thrived without fear.
A wishing bell on the lonely island of Bled Chimes thrice in haste when lovers are wed. Its echoes spread with the whistling winds Carries it to the shore where thrushes sing. It brings good luck to the faithful and true. Restores fortune so that man may live anew. The tale of this bell goes back many years - A woman lay beside her husband in tears His final hour on the earth was spent And his weary soul to heaven was sent. He breathed his last, hands joined in prayer Now, he is rests in God’s own sweet lair.
She took her jewels, the little she own'd. Cast it into a bell, melodious 'n sweet-ton'd. And on a boat, towards the island she row'd Against a storm and a fierce gust that blow'd It moaned and howled, loud thunder growl'd. Battling the disturbed waters, she slowly drown'd.
When nights are still and the moon sails high Its silver beams shine where Bled's waters lie. From beneath the lake there comes a faint chime Of a ringing bell long lost in time. It rekindles the vows that once were sworn Of marriage, of trust, of love re-born.