Well, the fun weather has come to a screeching halt. After spending the last 16 months in warm, mostly sunny weather, Mother Nature brought reality back yesterday. Not that I’m complaining about my first month in Croatia. The weather has been unbelieveable – blue skies, light breezes, sunshine every day but one, low humidity – it’s just that I’m not ready for winter. I’m never ready for winter. Hate it!
The very black clouds started rolling in yesterday afternoon. They looked so bad coming over the mountains that I decided not to make a bike trip to the grocery. Good decision as I would have been caught in a major rainstorm on the way back. The wind blew very hard, the rain went horizontal and it got cold. Well, not New Hampshire cold, but I’ve been mostly in Costa Rica for the past 16 months, so this is cold.
The front is still coming through but today we have bright sunshine and high winds, and a forecast high of 62, although the wind makes it much colder. Forecast calls for some warming and then another cold front later in the week. Winter is on its way – and I need to head south to flee the coming cold.
Fortunately, I brought some clothes for the occasion, some of which had their first use during my morning walk today.
Visnja, my landlady (that sounds strange), showed up at my door yesterday with a plate of very thin pancakes, rolled and filled with fig jam, with nectarine halfs as a garnish. I would call them crepes but she called them pancakes. Had some yesterday as dessert after dinner and some more this morning with bacon and sausage. Delicious! The sausage is very good here, too, BTW, as are the dried sausage/meat products. The milk is tasty, too.
I’m still following the Greek news to see whether I should go there at the end of November as the next leg of my trip. Right now, the protesters have shut down many public services, such as the buses and tourist sites like the Acropolis. I still have another 3-4 weeks to make my travel plans, but if the public services are still an iffy situation I may have to think about going to Italy/Sicily first. After all, if I can’t take a bus or go to the historic sites that I’ve wanted to visit, Greece would have to wait.
All the countries I’ve targeted as possibilities are in relative close quarters (Greece, Italy, Turkey and Romania), so it doesn’t make much difference what the eventual order is – except that I need to be out of the Schengen zone for 90 days between Greece and Italy. And Romania is now back in consideration, with Turkey, for that out-of-the-zone visit, since its participation in Schengen has been denied for the time being. The Romania/Turkey trip would fall about March-June, so Romania’s weather would be coming out of winter. Plus, I have friends Emilia and Anthony there to help me get adjusted.
Also had been considering spending my last month in Croatia further south in Dubrovnik. I haven’t been very successful in finding an apartment there, as yet, and may eventually decide just to stay in Vodice. There’s not much to do here, but there might not be much more to do in Dubrovik once I finished touring the sites. I may, however, take a 3-day trip there to play tourist. It’s about a 5-6 hour bus ride from Vodice, so the travel is basically a day each way. A hostel, or even two nights in a hotel, would not be expensive and the bus trip would be relatively cheap, if long, and would afford me the opportunity to see more of the countryside, as well as towns along the way. Stay tuned.