Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Next Stop...Dubrovnik

We're up before 6:00am to catch a bus/ferry to the Pejelšac Pennisula and on to Dubrovnik. It was a first for us to get on a bus that went on a ferry and then back on to a highway. We saw a marvelous sunrise leaving Korcula with many islands near by. This is very mountainous territory, and steep right down to the sea, rugged with dense pine trees. We think it is every bit as awe-inspiring and beautiful as Switzerland or Italy.

We drive through some interesting towns and of course stop for coffee. The coffee consumption here is off the charts. Even Dick, Mr. Coffee, is amazed. One town, Ston, has unbelievable walls going right up the mountain. They are call feats of medieval architecture. How in the world did they build them?

A city bus (#3) brings us to the old city main gate, Pile (Pee-leh). A quick breakfast on the Stradun (main street) since we both craved an omelet, followed by 78 steps up a narrow "street" to our apartment...we are happy to be in good shape and with little luggage.

Our hostess, Lidija, was waiting to greet us, providing some ideas and directions of what to see and do. She also offered her memories of the 1991-92 war with Serbia, crediting President Clinton with ending the conflict. She had spent a year with her baby girl, sometimes in the catacombs, beneath Dubrovnik while her husband was defending the town. Over half of the homes and buildings. were destroyed or ruined, some still not rebuilt. It is amazing how resilient the people are and how much has been restored in less than twenty years.

Lidija just delivered some of her father's homemade beef goulash and bread. We'll have dinner-in tonight! We washed out some clothes because there is a washer, but no dryer. We've become accustomed to hanging the wet laundry out on a line.

Forty-two more steps up brings us to the next cross passageway. Sandy noticed a sign for a cable car to the top of the mountain behind the town which we hopped on for a 5 minute ride. From that vantage, the town looks like a miniature replica. The Adriatic/Mediterranean Sea spreads far into the distance.

Dubrovnik was heavily bombarded during the war with Serbia. Over 14,000 people were killed, half of them civilians. A war museum is housed in a 16th century fort on the mountain. It was used during the war in an attempt to protect Dubrovnik. We enjoyed a drink along with the view after we went through the museum. And then
walked around a bit tonight. There is much to take in tomorrow. Quite a city. Ended our day with some marvelous gelato.

Had a nice phone call from John. Nicky asked "when you come Grammy ?" We will be in Singapore in three weeks.

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