December 29, 2011

a new year, a million years !


Another year coming, a million years of geological history in a single cave gone by.
The name of the cave: SPILJA VRANJACA, and trust me, it's a beauty !

About half an hours drive from Split, and a bit more from our area.
The cave is worth a visit for sure, and even worth more on a hot summer day, as temperature in it is at a steady 15 C. during all year.
Formed over many, many thousands of years (and still growing with every drop that falls) this picture only shows one of the numerous pictures you'll see.

And if the owner, called Marco, has the time for it, he'll shwo you around with many details he only knows to share with you.

The cave itself is a beauty, entering and walking around in pure delight is easy to every person, young or old, and should there be somebody in your group that does not dare to enter the cave, the surroundings are fantastic too.
Any lover of nature and anybody wanting to experience a "wow feeling" deep below the surface, just go for it, even if you rather lay on the beach.

And apart from the cave and its surroundings, Marco Punda, the owner, is a most friendly person who loves to share his love for this special place and it's unspoiled natural atmosphere.
And he might offer you a small drink, a so called domaci orachovic, a strong drink made from rakia, green wallnuts, some orange and many more various things, as everybody has his own way of making it.
His however is special, with a surprising green color and a charming taste (however still strong).

Happy newyear, another year for the cave to grow, drop after drop.
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December 24, 2011

flying in or out


Santa almost knocking on the door, newyear coming soon.
Even the longest night in the northern hemisphere has been again.
So, let's go, heading for another year after the christmas diner has been joyed.

For me these last days of the year are even more "special" than expected.
I fell from a small roof and broke six ribs.
Another experience to write about ?
No..........I want to forget it as soon as possible.

Let's celebrate Christmas, as believers or just because it's finally quiet and peacfull for a moment.And than, let's start a new year, with lots of great moments. Flying in or Flying out, it's all just a matter of looking at it.

Till next, and all the best to all of you, pozdravi iz Svinisce, Sretan Bozic i Novi Godina.
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December 11, 2011

just a door

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Just a simple door, but the more you look, the more you see. I took this picture one day at the foothills of Mosor Mountains, in a deserted small town called Skocebi (hope I say it well). The place is reachable by car and foot, and worth an hours walk to see and feel a bit of it's history, however it's without inhabitants today. During the industrial revolution many people were invited to move to the coast, where the former socialist government had planned and built factories. Clever indeed, they offered modern housing, with tap water and electricity, a giant improvement for those who were used to catch the rainwater whenever they could. Not to mention electricity or heating in cold seasons. Life up there was harsh in those days, with no other transport than feet or donkeys, and whatever needed had to be grown, harvested and preserved in and around the house. Still today it's a regular habit for many people around us to be as self supporting as possible, growing their own vegetables, grapes for wine and olives for oil. Having chickens is a normal thing, mostly for the eggs, sometimes for their meat, and many (not all) keep pigs from autumn to winter. Just yesterday at many homes around us the pigs were slaughtered and the meat prepared for excellent pancetta and prsut (the delicious smoked dried ham). But today that's more a good tradition than a must. And don't forget that many (if not most) places today have good roads, electricity, telephone, internet and tap water. Many times when walking or driving around I am impressed by all signs in the landscape from those days when people worked all those small patches of land, higher on the slopes, moving stones, building walls, carrying water when needed, to grow whatever was needed to feed the family. And again, those slopes are pretty hot during summer days, and cold as ice during winter season. To me it's all beautiful to see, great to look around, discovering details you might not even think of. A simple wooden door it is, but look a bit better to see that little cross carved in the wood. Think back for a moment, to when some man (I guess) carved it, to ask for a blessing for his family. Just a door indeed. Just ???? (click on the picture to enlarge it)

December 05, 2011

not yet !


The weather overhere has been mild and pleasent untill now.
Hardly any rain, with day temparatures up to sixteen degrees celcius and more in the sun.
(In the shade it was rather fresh, but who wants sit in the shade on days like these).

Today started with a drizzle, still with views for miles and miles, clearly showing the cloud capped mountaintops around us.
And at the very moment I write this, the rain increesed and some thunder from far away sounds.

Thunder here can be pretty impressive when it's nearby.
As we're living between mountainrigs and slopes, thunder not only stays a bit longer, it echoes tremendously, all together making it to Dante's hell for a while, but even than, it's a fantastic experience.

The picture shows what has to come still, snow, and however the current weather is far from cold, it can be pretty cold overhere, with real snow for a couple of days, making a drive down to town a tricky expedition.
No problem, we are prepared for a couple of days on our own, with rice, beans, wine, meat and canned vegetables for "just in case".

And even better, when snow coveres our valley, most people stay home from their jobs (impossible to take the trip), and go out into nature, having a fantastic time out in a winter wonderland.

Snow here never stays long, and as soon as it's gone, it's time to drive down to the coast for a cup of espresso between the palms at the beach.
Yes, that's one of the great things here, the diversity of weather and micro climates.
And still, after "our"snow has gone, it's less than half an hours drive, to go up Biokovo Mountain, where the snow stays most of winter, and not just those centimeters we enjoy here.

What can one wish, with all these pleasures around ?
Nothing, as far as I know !
Yep, that's Dalmatia, also in wintertime a great place to be.
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hvala bogu, it works again

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For some silly reason the functions between Picasa and Blogger did not do what I wanted them to do. Hvala bogu (thank God) it works again, so here's a tiny update of life in our hidden valley. Life goes as it's meant to be here for us, slowly and in total peace. Yesterday I prepared a delicious meal for our best friends/neighbors, with a roast of young pig, a potato dish from the oven, cream and cheese to make it rich and tasty, traditional pears from holland (stoofpeertjes we call them), a dish of mushrooms and bacon, salad, and for desert a pie called "tarte tatin". All of it was fantastic, and we shared a delicious meal together, seated around the kitchen table, while the woodstove heated our bodies. Life is great overhere, social life even greater !! And however today it's raining, who cares, as we've got loads of books to read, and always something to do. We installed a washing machine, a dryer, a freezer, and next job is to create some space to get some of the many boxes from their storage in a garage in Omis. But first I have to finish a "little" job I am working on, building some extra storage behind our gardenhouse. Never did that before, but with some advise from friends and neighbors I'm perfectly pleased by the result so far. With no experience as a carpenter, nor in welding, nor in building jobs, I can tell you, you never know until you try ! And I do know now, with some good thinking in advance and no fear for beginners mistakes, you can do ANYTHING. (The kitchen on the picture above is history, as it's now a perfect place to enjoy my cooking skills).