and Croatian 9/13/2007-10/7/2007
ItàZabreb, CroatiaàSamabor, CroatiaàLjubljana,
SloveniaàBled, SloveniaàBohjni, SlàJulian
Alps, SLàBohjni, SlàIzola, SlàOpitja,
CroatiaàPlitvice, CràStarigrad-Palenica, CràZadar,
CràZagreb/Samabor, CràMilanàBostonàDenveràSteamboat Springs
DIA sitting on Delta Flight 107 waiting to take off:
the airplane with the engines noise rising in anticipation of imminent take
off. This is a little like starting
labor after a long pregnancy. First
there was the thought, then the commitment, then months of planning, picking
names and then the combination of romantic dreaming and anticipation about what
this would really look like . Would it
be well mannered and easy or cranky and stressful?
was in Walden until 1 PM, then drove back to Steamboat where we finished last
minute packing and headed for Denver. Arrived at Jarod and Heathers house about
7:15 PM and had a fine spaghetti dinner before a few hours of fitful
sleep. Up at 4 AM with Jarod going above
and beyond the call of duty by driving us to the airport. The rest is history to be made. Hopefully we will be delivered to Zagreb, Croatia
in about 9 hours with good APGARS.
stay in Atlanta. The shades are unnecessary, but cool.
out of Boston: In and out of Atlanta in an hour. We are angling Northeast across the Atlantic
just crossing Newfoundland. I had heard Alitalia is not plush and it is
living up to its reputation. There
are10” TVs monitors mounted on the ceiling about every 10 rows. No audio right now and the visual is flight
information; 190k down and 5,763 km to go.
A little depressing. Flight speed
is 1,740 km/hr, elevation 33,000 m with the outside air temperature at -500
C. I think I’ll stay in side and
enjoy my fish, potatoes and quiche.
reading the “Virgin Diaries” by Jeffry Eugenides. Had just finished “Middlesex” and enjoyed it
so much I thought I’d stick with him for another book. Very different novel, but still the same rich
characters, remarkable insight and ability to make the seemingly ordinary
7:30 AM Milan Italy:
Mom, are we there yet? The worst part of traveling is traveling. Actually it has been a very smooth flight
with fast efficient connections. We
arrived with the sun rising over the city of Milan.
The city and the agricultural fields around Milan had that yellow-orange Mediterranean
glow. Said high to a few super models as
we passed through the airport.
Supermodel Milan, Italy. Not bad for an amateur with a digital camera
on the run through the airport.
8:00 AM: Zagreb, Croatia:
Arrived at the Pleso
outside of Zagreb
around 11:30 AM. This entire trip is a
no reservation adventure. Our cab driver
was a very nice guy with good English skills.
We had a few central city hotels names from the Lonely Planet Guide in
hand and that combined with our cabbies helpful hints and cell phone assistance
we secured lodging one block from the train station (perfect location) at the
nap, shower and snack we walked a block to the main parkway and walked north in
to town. The parkway was just that,
grass, flowers, statues of fallen heroes and streets lined with old, but regal
glimpse of Zagreb. Note the modern touch (billboard) enhancing
the 18th century architecture and beautiful gardens.
lasting impression is that Zagreb
is a friendly, safe, beautiful and uncrowded city
Tomislav, the first king of Croatia. Appointed by the pope in 925 AD and in 928 AD
suddenly disappeared. No other history
fresh fruit and nut mix at the open market and wandered through the Cathedral
of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
After visiting many cathedrals through out Europe
I can understand why Catholicism became the dominant religion. Every time I walk in to one of these
magnificent works of art and architecture I almost convert.
Cathedral was first constructed around 1000 AD, but was destroyed in 1242 in
the Tartar invasion (also caused gingivitis and tooth decay). It was rebuilt in 1300 and then survived an
earthquake in 1800.
the way back to the hotel went through Ban Jalacic square. The square has existed since the 17th
century. The buildings around the square represent a variety of periods and
styles and situated in the middle of the square is a large statue of Ban
Jelačić on a horse, created by Austrian sculptor Anton Dominik
Fernkorn. The statue was first installed
in 1866 and at the time was facing north.
In 1947 it was removed by the Communist government of Yugoslavia as
they denounced Ban Jalacic an Austrian collaborator.
The statue was removed in 1947 as the new Communist
government of Yugoslavia
denounced Jelačić as an Austrian collaborator. It was hidden in safe
keeping by a Dr. Antun Bauer, and in 1990 the statue was reinstated after Croatia
regained independence and Jelačić’s historic role was reevaluated.
There is an urban legend that says that the monument always faces the enemies
with the Ban’s sword ready for action.
The statue now faces south toward Serbia.
As we passed Ban Jalacic today there was a group of
young musicians standing at the foot Ban’s sixty foot statue playing some
9/15/2007: Zagreb, Croatia:
Central Hotel: After a leisurely
morning and a cup or two of espresso,
took tram #6 to bus #102 to Sestine at the trail head of Mt.
Medvednica just outside of Zagreb. As the tram passed our old friend Ban Jalacic
there was a new group of “musicians” performing at the base of the statue in
the square. I have been wondering for
years where all the Moonies went, now I know, they are chanting in Ban Jalacic Square
a beautiful path along a small stream through a thick beech forest. As the trail climbed it narrower to a single
track and beech became pine. We topped
out after 2,700 ft of climbing on the highest peak in this area of Croatia. The bonus was that there was a road loop and
a bus that passed by every 30 minutes and we were able to descend in cushioned
luxury back to Sestine where we reversed our bus and tram route back to Hotel
highlight of the day was the assistance that we got going back to Zagreb. Being unsure of where the bus went and where
to transfer we found two young woman who spoke some English who were very
helpful. As we road down the mountain
they conferred in Croatian with each other about the best way for us to
go. An elderly lady over heard them and
volunteered to personally lead us to the correct busses and trams. She spoke no English, but her grandson who
was with her spoke a little. We now had
a team of four guides all more eager than the next to deliver us safely to our
destination. This kind of extrovert
helpfulness turned out to be pretty typical during our stay in Zagreb.
Trail up Mt. Medvednica
outside of Zagreb
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