200 meters to everything in Croatia

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September 18th 2005
Published: February 20th 2006
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Pag from abovePag from abovePag from above

My attempt to be artisitc. Where's ADAM?
I'll start by explaining the title of this entry. So far whenever we ask for directions we get the response "200 meters that way" I swear everything in Croatia is 200 meters away. It has become such a frequent response that I can't help but laugh everytime I hear that response.
We began our time in Croatia in the north along the coast in a little town called Opatija (O-Pat- Ya). This was a really nice introduction to Croatia. You forget how much you love the ocean when you are away from it for a while. We took a swim in the ocean and noticed that there were all these fish floating on the top of the water. They weren't dead they were just getting some oxygen. One of the croatian guys told us that this is a common thing and sure thing we have seen them all along the Adriatic Sea.
Because of the lack of Hostels in Croatia we have been staying at people homes, or extra rooms. This is a realy interesting experience, but I'll get to that later. We stayed with a really nice Croatian guy, Zorvich, in Opatija. He told us where to find free internet and good places to eat. We went to an outdoor movie theater, which was a really interesting experience. We convinced the guy at the movie place that it wasn't going to rain. He argued with us and some local Croatian people, only to finally let us watch the movie. Of course about half way through the film (Island) it started to rain harder than I have ever seen in my life. Huge rain drops, the size of golf balls. Completely unprepared for this LLoyd and I ran for Cover. I asked for my money back, and both Lloyd and the movie guy laughed and said "No" very emphatically. If anyone knows how the movie ends let me know.
My Croatian is really bad by the way and i know about two of three things...such as Dober Dahn...which means hello. We just found out after being here for a week that dober feche means good eveining...no wonder we kept hearing that at night.....Also Hvala (prounounced Fa La) means thank you...that is my most common response. It's really interesting when you try and speak english to people and the give you this blank look on their face...or just
Apartment Shopping in SplitApartment Shopping in SplitApartment Shopping in Split

In the background you may see the crazy croatian lady that failed at getting us an apartment...
get mad at you...But non the less we have met some nice croatians along the way who have helped figure out such things like which stop to get off at or wehre to go...
From Opatija we headed for the islands. Our first stop was on the Island of Pag, where supposedly all the "crazy partiers go." We were surprised to find out that the party season had ended about 2 weeks before we got there and thus we were the only ones staying in a five bedroom house. We rented scooters and cruised around the island. I had never ridden scooters before, but picked it up pretty quickly. Dad I wore a helmet the whole time don't worry. I'll even include a picture to prove it. We went out the first night and enjoyed a interesting mix of Croatian people and music. Going up to girls that don't speak any english can be rather intimidating and humorous.
After our short stay in Pag we headed back to the coast to the town of Zadar. I took a short day trip to the Plitvice National Park. This is an unbelievable natural wonder of crystal blue and turqoise lakes
Soccer matchSoccer matchSoccer match

Bad Idea = Throwing Flares at the field whilst standing in the middle of a crowd...Why? you may ask....because we love our futbol team!!! Go Hajduk!!
divided by amazing waterfalls. I must have walked about 10 killometers and finally found a little spot over looking the lakes where I enjoyed both my lunch and the unvelievable view.
From Zadar we headed south to Split. Split is and old Roman town, with a huge palace that makes up most of the "old town." We had heard of the crazy people offering rooms at the bus stations but we were completely unprepaired for what we were in for. As we got off the bus about five or six little old ladies awaited us at the bottom of the stairs. Lloyd and I both hot dissoriented, and tired had no idea what was happening. Each person took their turn of showing us on a map where their apartment was located and how great it was. We finally bargaine one lady down to about 20 dollars a nIght for a double room. She said it was in the middle of town near the discoteques and it was great. As we walked away from the crowd she started explaining that it was actually about a fifteen minute walk from town and that she was going to stick us on a bus where we would meet her sister and that it would "amazing." She showed us a picture of a really nice room with a private kitchen and bathroom. I don't remember her name but I do remember her wiskers and her mustache...She asked us where we were from...I imediately said "South Africa!" to which she said "Ahh many people come from south africa stay with me." Sure they do....... She put us on a bus and said thre stops...the yellow house....As we arrived we met her sister who showed the small, depressing room that I'm conviced had been used in a horror film. lloyd and I both looked at eachother in complete disgust and told her to call her sister on the phone. I talked to her sister, who just yelled at me on the phone, "what can you expect for 150 kruna a night." We told the lady thank you but the room was not good enough and we headed back to the center to haggle some more with the little croatian ladies. On our way back this guy approached us who must have been watching us the whole time. I'm convinced it was a conspiracy to make us
Bad Ass Mother $%!&Bad Ass Mother $%!&Bad Ass Mother $%!&

My Scooter "pepe"
spend more money. He said he had a great apartment. We asked him if he was "bullshitting us" he promised he wasnt. So we followed the nice tatooed man and his wife to the center of old town right of the Pjaza (piaza) where he showed us two apartments. We chose to stay with his mother on the sixth floor (walk up) in our own apartment with a balcony and a small kitchen. Her mother call us "her boys" and is so so nice. We have sort of a small summer kitchen on our balcony...She warned that we should unplug the stove when we're not using it because if we don't and it rains "You will Die." It's really nice to have a motherly figure here so far from home. Lloyd and I Cooked dinner on our patio, climbed up on our roof to enjoy the amazing view and then went out with two Ausie guys to this unbelievable bar over looking the ocean. Drinks were about 8 dollars but the view was worth it. We bumped into some guys from marin. The world is so small.....
Today we took a self guided tour of the palace and figured
Old town SplitOld town SplitOld town Split

cool tower
out soccer tickets for saturday as well as Davis cup tickets (tennis match) between Russia and Croatia... in a week.
On our third day in Split we met this other Ausie guy. He was looking for a room so we offered him our couch. He accepted and we've been hangin out with him ever since. He's on his 9th month of traveling and has given us a lot of usefull info....We went to a soccer match last night, between Split and Rijecka...I don't think any one actually watche the game they just sang and screemed the whole time...They sang a lot of american songs with croatian words. and just yelled. Split lost 1-0 but it was a cool experience.

Today we are heading to the island of Broch where we will meet our scuba instructor Mateo. Lloyd and Mateo have been talking on the phone about every other day. Mateo calls us all the time to find out how we are doing and make sure that we are comming. We are going to spend 5 to six days here and then go somewhere else...I don't really have to think that far ahead right now. ahhhhh
Croatia is a beautiful country with a really interesting mix of nice and mean people. We've heard that the ratio of women to men is about 3 to 1 due to the war in 1991. Still we keep meeting great people and are having an unbelievable time. i send my best to everyone.

Some people have been getting annoyed that I have not been updating this fast enough...I'm sorry I didn't know people actually read this...jk....i'll try harder to update it more...I don' t have time to add mroe pics but i will later today or tomorrow when i get a chance...i have to get on my ferry in 4 minutes it's about 200 meters away


20th September 2005

hey -bad ass mother #2@*!er
hey adam... I wanted to tell you that your pictures are amazing and you are inspiring me to travel more!!! I hope you really soak up every minute because you are not missing much in the post graduate world...send me some of those uncensored emails from time to time ( the ones that u dont send to mom and dad!) My life is so boring.. i decided to go to optometry school after all, so I am just study for the damned OAT test. Keep in Touch!xoxo, griffin
22nd September 2005

Holy Moly!
Wow, I am super impressed with your photographs and journal entries. I am so happy your experience is going so well. I miss you more than ever! Love, Jamie

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