Can’t recall how long I was in Croatia but yeah seemed a while cus did a lot or so I think! First stop was in Dubrovnik but knew I wasn’t going to stay. I did get a reply from a Couch Surfer who was kind of busy with his job, etc. But he did offer me his warehouse to crash though he said it had no bed, mattress or bedding. Well I’d be pretty lonely in there with just my thin little sleeping bag. But didn’t mind cus had no thought of staying in Dubrovnik cus so many people had told me it’s very touristy and expensive there. Yeah they were so right cus planned my trip so went from Mostar in Bosnia to Dubrovnik on an early bus. Got there around 11 am and saw 4 cruise ships in the harbor which is next to the bus station. So got my ass over to the ticket office and bought a ticket out of Dodge (sort of speak or for u non western folks wanted to get my ass out of town). Got a ticket on the 1 pm bus north to Split the second largest city in Croatia.
Thought shit I’ll at least check out the old city/fortress or whatever it’s called as know all European cities have old cities. Hell as far as I’m concerned all cities in Europe are old cities! But that’s just my observation as they are still nice to see! So I started walking down the street and it was so slow cus there were so many cruise ship passengers. (I figured 4 ships with 1000 passengers or 4000 slow moving, camera waving, targets to be either ripped off by con artists or shop keepers!) I figure these passengers must get a stick shoved up their ass before departing the ship cus they all move so slow on the street! I’m not the world’s fastest walker (which is why I like to run) but these people were moving so slow that I looked like Bolt (the Jamican world record holder for the 100 & 200 meter runs) in comparison. Hell I had to walk on the street to get around them so I was basically walking on the street all the time. It’s about 3 or 4 kms to the old city/fortress I’d say and shouldn’t take long but it took me almost ½ hr. Then when I started walking down hill towards the old city/fortress there were so many tour buses and people around the old city/fortress that I thought it was under siege like Sarajevo was in the early 1990’s. So figured this is going to take me too long to get in and out so decided to use my imagination on what the inside looked like and beat my ass out of there. But no problem as I’m really not big on tourist sites but hell what else was there to do in 2 hrs to see the beauty of Dubrovnik! But sometimes the beauty of a city, site or chick is lost when they are completely surrounded by admirers! So got back to the bus station with a hr to spare before the bus left. So that was my time in Dubrovnik!!!
The bus ride to Split was great as the coastline and beaches looked awesome! I liked Split a lot better than Dubrovnik. But then again maybe I’m just guessing cus I only saw a bit of Split and beaches, etc. the evening I arrived. I ended up in the same hostel room with Chuck an American guy I saw in Mostar. So we went out for a bite to eat and watched the US World Cup match. I don’t know what the hell I ate but during the night I got a violent stomach cramp and was sick all the next day. So didn’t even get out of the hostel dorm room. Luckily I had Chuck and 2 sweet Norwegian sisters in my room so they were really understanding & quiet as I couldn’t move. I had planned to stay a third day cus I still felt sick. Heck I never even seen much of Split but the others told me there isn’t much to see there but have to go to the islands to enjoy the area.
But I was also getting really bored so on the 3rd morning when my other 3 room mates were packing up to leave I thought shit I’m going too! So said goodbye to my roommates and dragged my ass down to the bus station though I was really weak from not eating for the past 30 plus hours. Once I got on the bus I was fine but kind of praying I didn’t need a bathroom break or I’d be in big trouble!!!!
But luckily I made it to Zadar OK with out major bathroom problems. Zadar is a nice city north of Split which I had planned to visit before getting sick. I had no reservation at any hostel or anything cus never do and definitely not this time cus I was too sick to even think of doing it. So I got off the bus stored my back pack at the train station. Then as per usual I beat my ass down to the walled old city (yeah like I said before another city with an old city). I had no idea where I was going or why I thought there’d be hostels there. So started walking around the old city and found 1 hostel but it was fully booked and the other places were way too expensive. So I thought shit where should I go? Then I saw all the boats going to the islands and remembered Marianna, a sweet chick I knew from home, had told me her parents came from the Island of IZ and it was super chilled. So headed to the ticket office and found out the boat going there was leaving in 1 hr. So bought a ticket and thought shit I’ll just leave my back pack at the station.
The boat ride to Iz was really nice and relaxing for a guy with a troubled stomach (yeah still feeling crappy or could say shitty). Well we got into sight of IZ my first thought was shit wonder if they have accommodations here as never gave that a thought. The island was pretty small and the village even smaller. I figured there were people probably renting out rooms in their homes but had no idea who they were. So I asked around in my broken Croatian (or non existent Croatian). Some one said this one family called Slovic or something over by this other small harbor (can’t recall the name) was renting out a room. So I struggled over and started trying to get directions and when I finally thought I found the house, shit there was no one was home. So shit now I only had one chance for a bed and that was the hotel which I figured is probably expensive. But found the guy running the place nice, friendly and accommodating as he lowered the price to about 15 E as he must have noticed that if he didn’t give me a room I was going to take out my sleeping bag and crash on his front terrace! So hell raced to my room and went straight to sleep but woke up hungry later. My first but thought was shit any restaurant would probably be closed. But it was only 1 hr later so walked to a couple restaurants but their prices were kind of steep. So went back to hotel with some chips, etc. The guy told me they had a vegetation buffet in the evenings. I figured that’s what I need for my tender stomach cus hadn’t ate in about 48 hrs now. So gently ate some nice homemade soup, bread and some salad stuff. But even that was hard on my stomach so had a cramp and had to sleep most of the next day to recuperate. I found out later that the hotel catered to people coming for yoga, alternative medicine, mediation, etc. I wondered why there were so many women then and no men! Hell thought I ended up in a woman’s only hotel not that I was complaining. But hell I could have been staying in a wild, easy, hot women’s hotel but wouldn’t have done me any good! Cus one I was too sick to care, couldn’t speak their language and hell I’m no prize so what the hell I may as well have been in a hotel with all guys ha ha!
But I did speak to one woman and had a laugh. She was a cute small Slovenian who brought her 5 year old son there cus he had nerve problems. But don’t know who there was going to help him. But anyway she could speak English and asked me if I was one of the doctors or specialists there to give a speech, lecture or help people. So I thought shit do I look that weird or that intellectual? But it was kind of funny cus shit if she only knew that she was talking to the village idiot not some village quack! Hell if I had any of my BC Bud well I could peddle it off as medicinal marijuana or something. But shit if I had any I probably wouldn’t be giving it away to small kids or Slovenian women (unless the woman didn’t have her kid with her ha ha) but no I’d probably be doing it myself. So I thought here I am in the most chilled place I had been on my trip and it would so cool to have a bit to smoke and just enjoy!
I wondered what is it that the people on IZ did for work or if they even worked. Cus always saw people just hanging around, in the water or sun tanning. Also saw a lot of older men playing this game of throwing balls trying to get the closest to a small ball on the other end of a sort of bowling alley. But it kind of reminded me of this stupid winter game they play in Canada called Curling. But it’s on ice and the people are throwing these big friggin granite rocks down the ice and sweeping the ice for some stupid reason. At least this game the Croata’s play they don’t do anything stupid like sweep the dirt to move the ball faster. Christ I saw this one guy literally throw the ball in the air to try and break up the rocks at the other end. Shit the balls landed on top of the other rocks and they all went flying. Hell one of them could have hit some guy standing there. But they must have known what was going to happen. I think someone said the game is Bachi something or other. The people may not work too hard or even at all but then who the hell owns all the sailboats and motorboats in the harbor??
Well I enjoyed the quietness and serenity of the Island. But a couple days of peace and tranquility and I was ready to hit the road again. So caught the 6 15 am ferry back to Zadar. Then the bus to Zagreb the capital of Croatia.
The scenery to Zagreb was also beautiful even if it wasn’t coastal but in the hills. One thing I did like was the bus drove on the major highway so we didn’t make pit stops in every small village or pick up passengers along the highway.
I have no idea how big Zagreb is but it seemed like a pretty place with a nice tram system from the bus station. But being an ignorant traveler I just jumped on the tram and never gave it a thought about where do I get a ticket or pay. So shit I got a free ride but when I got off I bought a ticket from a ksiok and tossed it in the trash.
The Carpe Diem (latin for seize the day which I can relate to) hostel I was looking for in the down town area. But then I had to asked around cus couldn’t figure out the directions as usual. But hell I finally made it there but with no reservation in the summer the place was booked. But Dom or Don (never figured out which one) let me use a tent to crash so I was set.
So after putting up the tent well it was Miller time as everyone else was already indulging. There were a bunch of cool people staying there plus Dom was really cool & Maljita (or whatever her name was) were in the same space as me so we got along. By this time I was starting to get hungry after 48 hrs with little except veggies and soup. So Kara (this American chick) and I headed off to eat and check out the downtown. When we got back a bunch of guys returned and 2 Serbian DJ’s from Belgrade in town to have a party at this Club close to the hostel. I also got a msg from a couch surfer who was going to be at this concert near the hostel in the old city (hell another old city) so she invited me to meet her and her friends. So talked Kara into joining me cus I can’t find any place in Zagreb. There was this Croatian dude that was asking for cigarette paper & found out he was rolling a joint which perked my attention. Found out he was the local dealer and often came by the place to keep the travelers happy there. So thought I’m going to like this town.
So after gettog a share of some smoke, Kara and I decided to head to this concert first and then to the club as most from the hostel were heading there which didn’t start till midnight or so. Hell getting to old city was a bit of a climb up a few stairs as had to ask couple of local guys for directions. So four of us kind of hung together cus had no idea where I was to meet Elena the couch surfer and better still I didn’t really know what she looked like. So one of guys had a mobile phone so he texted Elena. She replied and said she wanted me to call her. Well shit I had no phone, dislike talking on phones plus I can’t speak Croatian. So I told the Croatian guy to call Elena and tell her he was me! So Elena finally met us but she was with a lot of her friends and wanted us to join them. But for some reason we didn’t mainly cus the music was good but it was like Gypsy type and couldn’t get into it. So we bid them goodbye and decided to head to the Club to meet the Dj’s and the others from the hostel. Unfortunately we couldn’t find the club so the 2 Croatian guys decided to come too and showed us the way. The guys were a physiotherapist and Personal trainer so they drank but weren’t big into staying out late cus they had to get up at 5 am or some ungodly hour!
The club was really crowded so it took a while to find the people from the hostel as the 2 Dj’s hadn’t started yet. So ran into this chick working at the hostel Malija (or something) and her friend Luba (or something). They were cool but found Luba a bit different as she was a Radiohead addict and also fell in love (or so she thought) some Italian musican she met on Facebook or something. She was kind of off the wall when I met her. Hell she had a dog & set up a Facebook profife for the dog she called Roc e Ro or some thing. So later a bunch of us went out side to blow a joint. This young English guy who was travelling with 3 of his mates wanted to join us. Well he had never smoked but wanted to try it. Luba the Croatian chick, Tony the English guy some Croatian guy who happened to hanging around our table and me. I guess Croatia is dangerous if u get caught smoking shit and even worse if ur a dealer. But shit I was just an ignorant traveler and shit happens! But hell we were in some back part of a park and were perfectly safe. What made me laugh was all the others got totally wasted while I could have stayed and smoked till the cows came home cus the shit wasn’t nearly as strong as our BC Bud but hey it was still doing the trick to me too!
So the Croatian dude was totally out of it but started to hit on some other Croatian chick sitting on a bench having a smoke. So we lost him but hell don’t even know if anyone knew him. Well Luba (or whatever her name is) was totally wasted and wasn’t talking about anything that made sense but maybe it was me that didn’t understand Croatian, ha ha!
But the craziest one was Tony the university student from England. Well he was right out of it and started to get paranoid. He had his head on the table with his tshirt over his head in a silly way like Football / soccer players do when they score a goal! Why they do that is beyond me? But I’d never seen anyone go like Tony did on smoke as it wasn’t that mind bloggling good! Cus if it was that good well I would have still been outside smoking the shit. But English and Europeans are wosses when it comes to smoke. They have to roll a joint with tobacco and a filter. Now I’ve had some tell me cus the smoke is too strong while others say it’s smoother this way. But hell I would think the stronger the better cus why are we smoking the shit if not to get stoned or in some way incompacitated! Smoking with tobacco is like having a beer with water or taking a shower with your clothes on! Regardless rolling a joint (they only like joints/splif and not bongs or vaporizers like we do). Shit smoking dope is like sex as there can be a 100 different ways to indulge ha ha! I’m not an expert on either subject but indulge in both from time to time so have my theories on them.
So anyway this Tony was pretty well passed out and no one could wake him up for the next hour or more. Shit the Croatians couldn’t figure out how a guy can pass out cus they thought he was only drinking. Hell I thought he must be drunk too cus no one passes out like he was from smoke.
Anyway the evening was interesting and fun as we got up to listen to these 2 DJ’s from our hostel play some awesome stuff and put on a show! I don’t know but along the way one of the DJ’s took a break and was having a beer. Then either him or this chick he was with dropped a bottle on the floor. So this Security guard threw this DJ out of the Club which pretty much ended the music so it was time to leave. Well since Kara was still around so we headed back to hostel. But hell we got lost even with her reading the map and me providing light to read it. Luckily Dom / Don the manager of the hostel came along on his bike and showed us the way back or we’d still be trying to find our way back! When we got back well there were a bunch of new faces at the hostel. But most were local Croatians stopping by for a beer plus the local dealer still trying to peddle his wares!
Shit the next day was a waste cus didn’t do a thing as got up when the sun came us cus slept in a tent. Then had to go back for a cap nap in the basement of the house later. Then when I got up it was Miller Time followed by 4:20. So that day was pretty much a write off too. So never really got to see much of Zagreb but some were talking about going to the lake in town for a swim. But no one actually made it. Kara went to check out some museum but hell I wasn’t going cus seen one museum and u’ve seen them all! But she came back later and said we had told these 2 Croatian guys who were Personal Trainers that we’d meet them that night as they wanted to show us their favorite bar. But hell my theory on this is u seen one bar u’ve seen your favorite bar. So I decided to pass on it but felt bad for Kara as she’d have to go alone. But Kara was such a chilled, cool chick that she never got pissed or upset! Probably why we got along so well cus she had to be easy going to hang out with me! Hell in a couple days we became real good friends. So I stayed at the hostel drinking the odd beer, smoking the odd joint or pipe and just chilling.
I had to laugh at the Croatians cus I was telling them how when people from the US, Canada, etc visit relatives in say Ukraine, Romania, etc. Their relatives say “could u bring some designer jeans, a shirt, etc when u come to visit cus we could use them” So after a few visits the people from the western countries sort of quit visiting cus they feel like they’re being used. Well these Croatian guys told me there’s a word for it in Croatian. The way they said it was like it was common to ask someone ‘could u bring me an ipod when u visit me cus my son really needs one’. The way they say it is like a normal occurrence like saying can u bring me the salt and pepper when you’re in the kitchen! Shit the word & the way the Croatians say it sounds so cool! What a laugh we had about it! Just wish I could remember the word they use. Well they told me 10 times but do u think I’d remember?? Shit I can’t even remember the dealer’s name so I called him V. as that’s what it started with. Shit I have a real good German friend & we Facebook all the time well we call each other by our first letters too, probably cus when we met I couldn’t remember her name!
So that night was a continuation of the day but we just chilled around the hostel, drank and smoked. Some were talking about going out but no one could get their shit together to do anything. Then around 2 am the V. Croatian dealer was wanting to go to this Club (probably to sell some shit or something). But I wanted to leave early in the morning cus had to be in Ljubjana in Slovenia that the next night Fri to meet some friends. Cus when I say I’m going to be there I want to make it. Well this dealer was telling me how dangerous it is to deal in Croatia so couldn’t figure out why he was doing it except maybe it was good or easy money. Hell I would never do it cus I’d either smoke it all or give it away. Anyway V was telling me about his friend who was in jail for 3 years for dealing & how the law was easier on drinking and driving or running over a person with your car. He said this guy in jail has a 5 year old son who was in school. Well the kid found a bag of his weed and took it to school to trade for some pokeman cards or something. So the teacher found it and the kid didn’t know what it was so he told the teacher. You keep it cus my father has a whole bunch more at home! Yeah I enjoy smoking and having a good time but that’s my limit!
Shit later on when people were starting to fade V brought out some Speed to liven things up and maybe get people to go to the Club with him. He was giving it away but I didn’t want any cus I don’t like to stay up for hours and also wanted to get up early the next day. But he did manage to talk this young English chick and her brother to do a hit! Then they were going to go to the Club around 3 am. So Kara being the nice person she is volunteered to also go even if she didn’t do any.
So the next morning well would u believe noon? I found the guys back from the Club still up and drinking. Kara told it was OK at the Club but she only went cus she wanted to keep an eye on the 2 English kids cus she thought V was a bit of a Sleazeball! She was that sort of person! So I said bye to everyone and we’d keep in touch.
So caught a train cus I was told no buses to Ljubjana in Slovenia!