We're planning our holidays for this Summer, and although we try and go somewhere we've never been, this year we're thinking of revisiting an amazing country; Croatia.
I'm not sure I should blog about it because not that many of my contemproaries seem to have been, and I'll only encourage folk to go. Right, horrible place, nasty weather, you wouldn't like it. Try Scarborough.
Okay, I'm a-fibbing. Croatia is like a cross between Italy and Greece, and is full of good stuff like beautiful buildings and gorgeous countryside, with clear seas and beaches where clothes are optional. What's not to like? Not a lot is not to like, that's what's not.
One thing that reminded me of our stay was some photo's of our day spent in the city of Dubrovnik, which is one of the nicest cities I've ever seen. In fact, I think I'll share it with you. If you do go, have a walk around the city ramparts, where you can get a good view of the rooftops. You can see the Adriatic in the background here:
One interesting point is to note how new most of the roofs are. They've all had to be replaced since the early 90's after the . . . er . . . what's a good euphemism for war? I know, after the Unpleasantness. In fact, the indiscriminate use of rockets on the city was decreed not just as an affront to architecture, but actually a warcrime which resulted in one Serb general going to prison. Yep, there was some serious unpleasantness going on and Dubrovnik was beseiged for the best part of a year in 91-92:
They've kept a lot of the bullet holes in the stone work, which is quite evocative and reminds you just how recent the war was. Tourist guides often remark that the Unpleasantness is a recent memory and a sensitive subject, and advise tourists not to bring it up. I found the opposite, and some guys my age were only too pleased to show where they shot out at Serbian boats from gaps in the city walls, doing very good impressions of small boats suddenly being on the receiving end of a hundred rounds from what appeared to be a big blank wall. In the words of one chap "The boatmen - they sheet themselves, sheet themselves good."
Well you would, wouldn't you?
Otherwise, the streets have been worn down to such a smooth finish over the centuries that it's like walking on warm marble. I actually took my shoes off because it feel so nice on your peds. It's like walking through a movie set ready for a fillum about Rome. Only with no Romans in it. And whilst it was fairly busy in the main areas and squares, just 5 minutes walk in the backstreets and the numbers of people dropped dramatically:
The buildings were stylish, the food delicious, the wine and beer nice and there was a general air that people had some taste and aesthetic competence.
So it was nice to come across a homemade fountain you're welcome to drink from, apparently:
Mmm . . . spring water. I stuck to my Evian.