Monday, September 13, 2010
Vaterstetten goes Trogir - Part I
Munich, September 2, 2010 at 4.30 am.
Picture me standing in my bathroom eyes still half closed, being almost ready to leave my home for my latest Dalmatian adventure.
The only thing left to do was drying my hair and closing the suitcase, when my hairdryer exploded with a decent amount of smoke and a shower of sparks. Well - NICE. At least now I was really AWAKE!
Thank god I am not superstitious. Otherwise I would have maybe canceled the trip at the very last minute, but then I would have missed a marvelous trip to Croatia. So I was just swearing like an old Dalmatian sailor and left home to go by taxi to Vaterstetten …
I have to admit that I had zero experience with group travels and -10 experiences with being the tour guide on a group trip. So I was looking forward to going to Croatia again, but (although I was perfectly prepared by Michael Baier from Partnerschaft mit Togir e.V. - Thank you!) also a bit scared if I would be able to manage everything and help to make the trip enjoyable for everybody. In the end I was a lucky girl blessed with a patient driver (and the perfect housemate together with Hilde) and the nicest fellow travelers you can imagine. Thanks a lot to everybody for all the light and laughter.
And of course I need to thank everybody involved in Trogir for the local organization including Mayor Damir Rilje and his wife, our amazing host Dean Bilić and his team (Visit his restaurant “GEMINI“ when you are in Trogir. It is directly next to Fortress Kamerlengo – you cannot miss it.), Negica, Viktor and all the other helping hands and lovely hosts, who took care for our group and opened up their houses and hearts.
During our week we enjoyed diverse liters of wine and liquor, a few dozens of fishes and several pounds of risotto, čevape, sausages and grilled meat mostly prepared by Dean and his team. And when we were not eating and drinking we could enjoy the fantastic program our hosts had put together for us. I will write seperate articles about our diverse short trips to sightseeing spots in and around Trogir, but two events I would like to mention tonight:
Trogir is a very popular spot and even now at the end of the summer season very lively and crowded. So after the long journey, a few very active days already spent in Trogir and some bigger excursions we were all in the need of a more relaxed day and so the trip to Veli Drvenik was perfectly planned.
On a sitenote for those of you who don't know Croatian: Veli means big, but that does not exactly mean that Veli Drvenik is big. It is only bigger than Mali (small) Drvenik ;).
After a nice and not too long trip with the ferry we entered the small and very quiet island and found ourselves some nice places at the waterfront. Some enjoyed just few hours of relaxing time in the late summer sun and some others – like me – went swimming in the crystal clear water.
At 2 pm we were back at the old school building of the island village. Dean was expecting us with cold drinks and a HUGE portion of risotto followed by a ton of deliciouls grilled meat, fresh bread, salad and refreshing water melons. Amazing what our Croatian friends prepared for us out of nothing. After lunch we sat together singing Dalmatian songs. It was so nice that we almost missed the ferry back to Trogir.
On Saturday night we had the already kind of „traditional“ (the „kind of“ relates to the fact that this city partnership is only 1 year old and we are still busy creating our own traditions) partnership party. Our Dalmatian friends had organized concerts of local music groups right in front of Fortress Kamerlengo for us and invited some special guests – the Neretva pirates!
The Neretva is a river, which flows into the Adriatic Sea near the city of Ploče in Southern Dalmatia. In the past those pirates were quickly coming out of the river delta with their flat and small rowboats to rob the big and only slow moving merchant ships and then escaped back into the river delta. Today it’s of course only show, but still very impressive how fast these boats are.
In our case the “pirates” were from the small city of Komin and extremely nice and funny guys. They even allowed some of us to come aboard and join them for a small rowing race along the Trogir waterfront. Afterwards they joined our partnership party, cooked fantastic Brodet (Dalmatian fish soup) and joined the local music groups for a several hours lasting "singing competition". It was a wonderful Dalmatian night.
That’s for today, but there is more in the pipeline:
Part II: The cities of Trogir and Split
Part III: The city of Šibenik and the Krka National Park
Stay tuned ...