Cirrus has had quite the summer. At the first of August his ear was finally cleared of infection from the grass seed he got in it at the first of July. It took two types of antibiotic, and four vet visits. During July he started getting hot spots on both front paws and seemed generally itchy all over. The vet first tried a cortisol spray, which helped his paws slightly but his general itchiness seemed to get worse. He was obviously uncomfortable. He recently got a new allergy medicine called Apoquel. By the second day of medicine his itching seems to be over and he seems much more comfortable.
July 28th was a very hot day. Daniel took the pups out for a walk while I was doing some chores around the apartment. He came back much faster than expected because right outside our garden he and the pups found a tiny fledgling sparrow. It was obviously overheating in the sun on the sidewalk so he brought it home so we could figure out what to do for it. We put it in a plant pot in some shade on our porch with some water. Daniel went to the store and got some bird seed too. A little later in the day our friend was still resting and the sun had invaded the porch so we made some shade with a dirty towel. Magnus was obsessed with the little bird and spent his day staring at it and wanting to get closer. It tried to fly several times throughout the day, and disappeared for about an hour at one point. That night we moved it into the Peka grill so it would have more protection from the neighborhood cats. It was a smaller drop if he had a failed flying attempt again. The next morning our little friend had successfully flown from the nest.
August 5th was Croatia’s Victory & Homeland Thanksgiving Day. It celebrates the end of the Croatian War of Independence. On that day in 1995 the Croatian Army took Knin and Croatia won its independence. It is mostly celebrated in Knin with the laying of wreaths, parades, and concerts. On Croatian National Holidays most stores, markets, and more are closed so that the workers can celebrate. For us this meant making a big market trip on Friday and planning the weekend meals ahead of time.
There was recently a new law passed in Croatia that stores, markets, and more are closed almost every Sunday. They are permitted to choose 16 Sundays to remain open per year. Since we are in a tourist area, most stores are choosing to stay open for the summer Sundays to take advantage of the tourist population that is in town currently. There are still some stores that are closing Sundays now and we expect there will be more in the off season later this year.
August 3rd we celebrated Magnus’ 11th birthday. We can’t believe he is already 11 years old. We posted photos and a video for his birthday here with pictures from the day, and each year of Magnus’ life. He came to live with us in October 2012, he’s been with us in 4 homes, and 2 countries now. He is a good big brother to Cirrus, he’s very healthy, and enjoys life in the Mediterranean.
On Magnus’ birthday we spent extra time at the dog park, and we witnessed an accident. The dog park is a large area with two retaining walls. One wall is about 8 feet and in perfect condition, the other is 12-14 feet and half of it has started to collapse, and is growing trees and grass. A few big dogs chase balls (and rocks) up and down the collapsed slope, and it’s something to watch. While we were sitting near the partially collapsed retaining wall on Thursday we saw a man slip at the top of the hill and roll/slide down the incline. He hit his head on some rocks and landed in a twisted pile. One of our dog park friends immediately called emergency services while we waited. Before the ambulance arrived, he woke up and decided he didn’t want to go in an ambulance despite the blood and obvious concussion. He had been unconscious for several minutes, but had been drinking before his fall. Luckily the ambulance arrived before he had made it far and they loaded him in. We have not heard how he’s doing yet.
We have made a few new friends at the dog park, and so have the boys. We feel like we have a nice new community there and it’s very nice. Cirrus’ current favorites are Nikki the Pomeranian, Molly, Bonnie, Paco, Archie, and Missy. Molly doesn’t make it to the park often, but Missy is there several times a week, and Nikki is there almost daily. Magnus hangs out with an older crowd unless Cirrus needs supervision, and his buddies are Melana the chihuahua, and Leo the Yorkie. They hang out on the benches with their owners mostly, watching all the young pups play.
It rained all evening August 4th and all day August 5th. There was finally a break in the rain, right at time to meet up with our dog park friends. The dog park was a mud hole, so everyone had decided to hang out in the larger main park area. Cirrus has not been great about coming back but with everyone else playing off leash and lots of puppy parents around to help, we felt safe to let Cirrus and Magnus off leash. Magnus stayed right by one of us the whole time, just as close as he would if he were on leash. Cirrus took the opportunity to RUN with Missy, Paco, and a few other dogs that came through the area while we were there. He ran huge circles, wrestled in the wet grass, and had the best time. He came back when we called almost every time, and will probably get to do it again when the park isn’t busy or the dog park is too muddy.
The storms that made the dog park a mud hole also cooled the weather off and we’ve had several wonderful days in the high 70’s/low 80’s. It’s been great to have the windows open, and not come home from walks dripping sweat.
The first weekend of August we decided to make tacos. We haven’t found a salsa we love here yet, so Ammi made her first homemade salsa. We loosely followed a simple recipe, but fried our onions, peppers, and garlic, and roasted tomatoes and peppers before mixing it all together with spices. We have not been able to find ground cumin here, so it was still missing a little something, but was delicious.
Friday, August 4th we got notice that Ammi had been approved for Digital Nomad residency. We are still waiting for word that Daniel's permit for Digital Nomad residency has been approved. Our next steps are going in and getting our residency cards and getting on the state insurance. We’re very excited to be approved. Once we have our residency cards we can freely travel the EU. The pups already have their EU Pet Passports, so we will be able to travel as a family. We will let you know here about our adventures of course.
We’ve been trying to stay connected to people back home more purposefully lately. In July and the first of August we’ve had video calls with the Mullenixes in Tennessee, Jason & Meagan in Kentucky, and Kyle in Maryland. We have a call planned for Ammi’s Dad’s birthday this coming weekend too. We will be reaching out to other friends and family too. If you’d like to video chat with us, please let us know so we can add you to the list.