Darling Dubrovnik

Trip Start Sep 11, 2005
Trip End Dec 13, 2005

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Flag of Croatia  ,
Thursday, October 27, 2005


Dubrovnik is a place that caught us off guard. We were expecting a small town near the southern tip of Croatia. We were greeted with a larger city than we had expected and a ton of tourist. The cruise ships come to port here and fill the town with folks ready to spend their money and see as much as they can in the short time they have. So watch out!

The beauty of the place was a bit hidden for us, because we had just come for the amazing Korcula. After we got past our ideas of a quaint town with glistening beaches we enjoyed the place. It also has a lovely old town which is enclosed by a wall and encircled by the blue waters. The wall has seen many battles and the people make sure it is standing. Amongst these walls the city withstood 2,000 bombs in the war with Bosnia, Serbia, and Herzegovina. They have done an excellent job of repairing their town and the damage that was done. It is a beautiful place which Croatia managed to maintain control of.

As we arrived on the bus we found out that our bags had gotten covered in wine. All the bags underneath the bus had managed to get covered somehow. Everything was soaking wet and we were not very cheerful about it. An annoying lady kept pestering us to stay in her room. We knew better this time and told her that if we didn't like it we would not be staying there. She crammed our bags in her tiny trunk and headed towards town.

When we arrived at her home we were not very excited about the accommodations or the distance to the main sights. We thanked her for the ride and headed on our way. We managed to find a much nicer place close to the water and the Old Town. We were thrilled with our find.

The Old Town was fairly small, but very clean and welcoming. We wandered through the streets and found our way to the port and the deep blue water. The beauty of the water against the cliffs was refreshing. We were glad we made the journey.

Our least favorite thing about traveling has to be finding food for a good price. Each restaurant has a menu outside which we glance at to try and determine if we can afford anything we want to eat. If we are hungry it can be a frustrating process. The grocery store is also an option, but if we don't have a kitchen the choices there are pretty limited as well. Pizza is always a choice, but I can say that I get tired of pizza. I never dreamed it possible. We always manage to find something, although sometimes it cost way more than we wish. This night I settled for lasagna.

Our last full day in Dubrovnik was my favorite. I call it our social day. In the morning we ran into Jes. She is an Australian we met in Bled, Slovenia when we stayed in the same hostel. We then saw her in Korcula when we were out for dinner. Wouldn't you know it we ran into her again at the Tourist Information office in Dubrovnik. We decided to grab a meal together since we seemed to be following each other around. It was good to talk to her and get her story. It felt like I had another friend besides just Charlie.

We then ran into our Canadian bus mates who had their clothes soaked with wine as well. We chatted a bit with them and then showed Jes the town. After we went our separate ways Charlie and I decided it was time to see more of this town. He wanted to go to the Maritime Museum and I wanted to walk the top of the walls which surrounded the city. It was a beautiful day and we greatly enjoyed being a tourist.

The Maritime Museum reminded Charlie of the Navy. We looked at all kinds of different boats and the gadgets that went with them. It helped us see a bit of the history associated with this town. We then ventured along the walls. A ticket man was there to take our money and allow us entrance. He asked us what country we were from, it seemed this had something to do with the what he was going to charge us. I asked him, "What country do you want us to be from?" He smiled and Charlie told him America. He then asked us, "What is the tallest mountain in America?" My smart husband responded with Mount McKinley in Alaska. The ticket man smiled and said we owed him 10 Kuna, which is about $1.85. We could handle that, since it was supposed to cost about $10. I was proud of Charlie for knowing his trivia confidently. The ticket man was proud too. He commented on the number of people that don't know their own country's geography. I tried to rush off before he could prove that I might be one of them.

It was a lot of fun to walk the walls. We could see amazing views of the Adriatic which surrounds Dubrovnik and the town which the wall protects. I envisioned being on the lookout for the bad guys and what it may have been like not so very long ago. We could see evidence of the recent bombs and the repairs which had been made. Each building had a new roof because of it. Most people showed off their bright orange ceramic tiles, others covered the new roof with the old. This kept the historic look in tact for them.

As we roamed the wall we saw a lovely bar that boasted the best view in town. We had to agree that they did have it. As the sun began to sink we sat over the cliffs at this bar and watched the sun set. It was a glorious sight. We were very grateful we had made the journey down to this warm, welcoming country. The sunset place didn't serve food, and was way overpriced, so we headed on our way.

The struggle to find food for dinner was before us. We had much trouble but ended up at a restaurant overlooking the Old City, on the terrace. We were joined by one other couple that was near our parents age. We enjoyed our dinner and sat and talked to them for a few hours. They lived in Israel. She was a Jewish American who went to Jerusalem to study as a young adult. He was a counselor in Israel. They married and have been traveling the world ever since. We heard stories of their daughters, their adventures, and their country. We shared ours as well. It was great to talk with them as the night grew later and later.

Our bed was calling our name. We made it home and prepared for our flight the next day. A good night sleep and two bus rides later, we made it to the airport. Since we were flying one way we had to purchase a business class seat for some reason. That was annoying when we bought the tickets, but exciting now. We were welcomed in the business lounge where all kinds of treats awaited us. We kept asking if everything was free. They would smile and say yes. It was nice to feel like luxury for a few hours.

We had a wonderful flight into Vienna and managed to find a cheap room with a kitchen nearby. We are excited about our little flat. Sometimes we share it with a few others, but it is nice. This is our home base as we explore Vienna. I'm sure it will be fun.
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