I realized we hadn’t written here in a while to catch everyone up on our lives. We spend our weekdays walking the neighborhood, trying new foods, and working. Our weekends are filled with exploring further Split destinations, garden upkeep, board games, video calls to friends back home, and tourist watching. Daniel takes at least one bike ride a week, weather permitting. He rents city bikes and he rides all the way to the other side of the city. The photos he gets are amazing. At the first of April we went to the Split flower show. We bought our tomatoes and a few herbs there.
For our anniversary this year we hired a local photographer and had photos done in and around Diocletian's Palace. Our photographer, Ema, was great and we had a wonderful time.
The McFluffinton Pups
The pups are doing well. They love all the walks and are getting spoiled to multiple walks a day. Cirrus is very upset to find that we don’t control the weather and cannot make the rain stop. We’ve found all the food they ate in the US, and replaced a few options with local options that they seem to love. Cirrus has taken to laying down on walks. It's very cute but also a little annoying.
The weather here is amazing. We’ve had a few days of rain, but it’s a beautiful rain that we can sit on our covered porch and watch. Our tomatoes and herbs are growing well, we already have several tomato blooms. The lemon and orange trees have bloomed and they are the most amazing smell I’ve ever experienced. The lemon tree has lemons bigger than my thumb and the orange tree has the tiniest green balls that I hope become oranges. The orange tree is right up next to Daniel’s office window and we open it every day so the smell of orange blossoms float through the house. It’s delightful.
We have a few favorite restaurants. A pizza place (Pizza Bar Renato) that’s Italian style and has the best kulen we’ve had yet. Kulen is one of my new favorite foods. It’s like pepperoni but possibly better. It’s sausage with paprika and garlic. It’s a little spicy but perfect on a pizza or anyway you would eat sausage. I’ll miss it when we leave Croatia, it’s a delicacy here. We have a place (Restoran Opatia) that’s our favorite for a nicer meal. Their pasta bolognese, lasagna, grilled chicken, grilled vegetables, tuna steak, and veal roast are all amazing. Daniel has gotten a Crock Pot brand pressure cooker here and he’s made some really yummy meals. He’s also perfected a pasta sauce, better than anything I’ve ever made. I think that means he’s perfected every meal I ever cooked for him and taken it to another level. We were told we would lose weight due to all the walking when we moved to Europe. With all this amazing food, that’s not happened yet. I’ve not had stomach issues since moving here, the change in my digestive system is amazing. I can eat almost everything suddenly. Even the McDonalds here is yummy and does fine with my stomach.
We have two malls that are relatively close. The pups are allowed to go into both of them. They've had a few mall trips so far and they seem to absolutely love it. They behave very well and know that we don't potty inside places. The mall closest to us, Mall of Split, is the largest mall I've ever been to. It's several stories tall and very pretty. It reminds me of a giant Green Hills Mall in Nashville. Malls in Croatia are almost always busy and the stores are a lot more diverse than American malls. Both malls have grocery stores and butchers along with the clothing stores and sport stores you would expect.
Looking Forward To...
It’s nearly warm enough to start thinking about taking swims in the sea. I’m getting excited for the possibility that Cirrus might be brave enough to swim with me. Or at least wade into the clear water. We’ve walked to the beach a few weekends now. We just sit on the pebbled beaches and watch the waves and boats in the distance. We can see a few islands across the water and it just makes for a beautiful view.
We’ve applied for our residency permit but Croatia is behind on processing permits so we’re waiting. We’ve heard some people have waited for more than 9 months. Our year in Croatia doesn’t technically start until our permits are approved. While we wait we can’t leave the country but we can stay and work while we wait. In the end, we might have a couple of years in Croatia, which is something we’re pretty happy about. We love it here. After our permits are approved we will officially be residents. At that point we can travel the EU and Schengen Countries. We’re excited about that part of our adventure to start too.
We've learned more about Croatian/Dalmatian winds since living here that I think can only be learned by lived experience. A Bura wind is a cold wind from the north/north east. It blows over the mountains towards the sea and it clears the sky. Despite the chill it brings, it makes for beautiful days and good moods. The Jugo is a wind from the south/south east. It blows from the sea inland. It means cloudy days and cloudy moods. I know we're having a Jugo when I wake up with a headache.
In April we had a few bad Jugos and spring allergies and I was miserable for at least 10 days. I'm glad it's past and I can enjoy the spring like weather and our walks before summer heat arrives.