Wednesday, September 28, 2016

A Glimpse At Our Daily Life in Dubrovnik

Jen here. As we prepare to depart Dubrovnik, we are feeling bummed to leave. It is a pleasure to do a little recap and recall why exactly we, like so many others, have fallen in love with this place.

Home away from home
Our Croatian flashcards -- they helped!
(and half eaten artistic)

View from our kitchen, which many of you have already seen
Sometimes we'd go to the market and find exciting things like hummus!

One of the local community cats whom Otis named Sunny

Bus ticket with, yes, an image of Old Town. All roads lead to and such.
As Chris noted in his last post, when we arrived at the end of August, it did not take us long to realize what a great city we would be living in for the coming month. We quickly acclimated to the rhythms of life in our new neighborhood, Lapad. After going through Italy at a rapid pace, it felt good to unpack and know that we could settle in for a bit.
A usual day saw us getting up at varied times in the morning, having a light breakfast at home (me) or walking to the market a block away for pastries (Chris/Otis), working/reading/internetting for a while, cooking up a lunch in our apartment (usually pasta or some kind of legume soup/stew situation) and then heading out for a later afternoon adventure and regrouping at home between 7-8 after enjoying the sunset, enjoying dinner at home and then spending the evening reading, internetting ( anyone?), working (I specifically try to work several times a week in the evening in order to catch my colleagues in their time zone if necessary) or sometimes going out for a walk on the nearby promenade or for a gelato. There was also sometimes arguing and sulking but we didn't tend to photograph that.
Our Airbnb host left us toilet paper with cats and soccer balls - how did she know?

Promenade at sunset, usually crowded with tourists during summer
...because it is equipped with workout equipment
Sometimes we went to Exercise Park, a name we made up...

Our afternoon adventures typically consisted of two main activities: 

Simply going out for a walk along the promenade and path along Lapad Bay, heading for a swim in the Adriatic 

What's up under there

A typical "beach" experience here is more about going down by the many rocks and hopping into the clear water. There are many ladders bolted into rocks throughout the city for easy access/exit.
On this day Otis and I decided to swim across the bay and back. It was tiring but we loved doing it.

That feeling when there's a gorgeous sunset and you are all damp from the sea and heading home to shower and have dinner.
Never enough sunsets

View from Lapad Beach at night.

Going to explore Old Town. 

On the bus for another adventure around Old Town

While the straightforward bus service takes about 10 minutes to get from our neighborhood to Old Town, it was not infrequent that some or all of us would walk over and enjoy the beautiful view of the coast. 

On the way to Old Town you pass military equipment parked in a park to remind you of the nation's past

Once within the city walls, there is plenty to see and do, although it is also a divine place to *peoplewatch.* This place is a magnet for tourists, especially but not limited to people coming off of the many cruise ships that stop by here, and there is so much activity. Despite its tourist attractiveness, and that at peak visiting season it is crowded on the Stradun (main street), it has a wonderful energy and light. It is so very attractive and charming. We mainly walked around but during our time here we also went to some museums, churches and even observed a portion of a very fun Game of Thrones tour (Chris didn't want to go alone and I don't like GoT so that was as close as we got).

Ploce Gate

The Big Onofrio's Fountain, built in 1438 so everyone could have fresh water. The aqueduct system they installed here is impressive.

This gargoyle allegedly grants you a wish if you can balance on it and remove your shirt.  !!??

Pokemoning their way worldwide - here on the Stradun

Our first night here! We ate at a great veg restaurant called Nishta, seated in the warm evening in the small alley-like streets. It was lovely! 
Moonrise over nearby Lokrum Island.
We will be posting soon about some of our other adventures, including some less typical adventures in Dubrovnik and some day trips as well. Check back early and often. :)