13 months
Aug 26:
rethink croatia
Aug 28:
beating the crowds
Sep 3:
the low down
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view of houses from atop the city wall
Dubrovnik, Croatia; Aug 31, 2005

stairway to exploding yogurt

Holey-moley that’s a lot of stairs – 519 to be exact (that’s stairs, not steps). We know because we’ve counted and climbed them in agony several times now. Why? Because at the moment we happen to live at the top of a very large mountain. Now you can legitimately ask again: WHY!?? Because when you’re traveling for a long period of time, every once in a while you make a mistake in judgment.

does this seem like a lot of steps? this, my friend, is
nothing... chump change... minor leagues... kids' stuff...
let's just say that after Dubrovnik, we had some kller
calf muscles.

We arrived by bus in Dubrovnik and waited for the little old ladies to approach us with offers of a vacant room. We’ve done this a fair amount while traveling to save money and since its Croatia’s peak tourist season, it is our only option. A middle-aged man and several old ladies approached us. It’s unusual for a man to be peddling a room and we were instantly lured in by the man’s ability to speak English and the promise of a “just remodeled” room with air-conditioner. We could tell that the cute old ladies were trying to warn us about something but we couldn’t understand them and an argument ensued between them but the well-spoken man convinced us to take his room and being convinced by the ease of communication, we did.

As promised, the room was remodeled and had an air-conditioner (not functioning at the time, but that’s not unusual and hey, who’s splitting hairs here anyway). There was even a small pool. What he neglected to mention (and probably what those nice ladies were saying) is that it’s 519 steep stair steps plus ½ mile flat walk to town (and restaurants and grocery stores, etc.). Or worse, a zig-zag 45-minute bus ride. It’s a grueling walk in the heat of the summer and it makes going home for a quick rest impossible. We also didn’t have a kitchenette or even a little fridge to store a bit of food. This is a big problem for Grace who is an early-riser/cereal addict/must-eat-upon-wake-up type of person. So, on our way home every night we’d buy two cups of yogurt and place them on the shelf of our hot room for the next morning. Wow, warm yogurt for breakfast. Now there’s something you don’t want to experience many times in your life. Worse off, the cups would be so bloated by the morning, stewing in the warm air, that the yogurt would explode out when we peeled open the tops. We did this for all our days in Dubrovnik and it gave us a new appreciation for the convenience of refrigeration and the advice of cute, little old ladies.

   
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