There are very few cities that live up to their touristy hype. Very few have their own music that they let you tune into. But when you are wandering in the Julian Alps for several days and then suddenly fall into the arms of a Mediterranean town called Trogir, then there is music every few steps and a smile at every corner.
My husband had planned our Europe trip very well and after bidding goodbye to the Alpine cities in Slovenia, we drove into Trogir (in Croatia) on a perfectly sunny afternoon. Of course, my Fun in the Sun bliss was doubled by the ignorance that comes out of not reading a single page of Rick Steve’s Essential Guide to Eastern Europe.
The B&B that we had booked was a spacious room with wooden accents and shades of lavender. It also had a huge double-paned decorative wooden window. My son and I sat on the window sill and had some snack. The B&B owner was a pleasant woman who quickly made friends with us. She spoke fairly good English, but when we asked for sugar in our Espresso, she said to my son “Come we will get sugar. Sugar lives downstairs.” :-)
Soon after snack, we left for a tour of the town. Just outside the church, we were greeted by a wedding procession that was led by a person carrying the Croatian flag. He was followed by the musicians, and the bride, the bridesmaids and her relatives. Everybody including the bride sang and danced. I must have been too enthusiastic in my cheering and applauding since soon after the songs got over, I got my first Hvala (Thanks in Croatian) complete with a wink from one of the musicians!
The church was beautiful with carvings of Adam & Eve and several scenes from the Bible. It had a section which displayed some expensive looking intricate gold and silver treasures. Of course, just when I thought my son had started appreciating all the artwork and treasury, he was thrilled to see the red curtains of the confession box and the red pillows in the seating area, and started asking me if we were in a restaurant. That’s when we got out of the church, and made our way to the palace and its fortress. He preferred the open spaces of the fortress, and I liked the golden hue that the ruined fortress got due to the trick that the sun rays played at dusk. We played a game of tag in the courtyard when my husband made another round of the palace and finished clicking the 100th photo of Trogir.
The stroll outside the palace was perfected by a view of the marina, a couple of bridges, and rows of sailboats competing with the rows of palm trees. As the sun immersed in the turquoise waters, the palm trees were lit up and the lights of the sailboats reflected and moved slowly on the water.
We came back to the room tired and ready to go to bed. But there were some familiar tunes floating in the air, so we threw the window open, only to find local musicians playing Mrs. Robinson and Scarborough Fair in a Croatian accent right in the square. We sat on the window sill and watched the shadows of the musicians as the orchestra lights changed colors. I think we overused that window sill, since my son started calling it ‘the bench’ towards the end of our stay. As the drummer played the last song Don’t Worry Be Happy entirely on dinner plates rather than on the drums, we shook a leg or two to the music, exhausted ourselves completely and dropped into the bed only to be woken up by the sound of the church bells next morning.
Trogir turned out to be slightly more than a touristy town for us. It was a cute little place where the window sill became “the bench”, sugar lived downstairs, the palace offered its courtyard for our playtime, the sailboat lights danced on water, and sunshine was always at our service!
Thank you, Trogir!
[– This is a Facebook note I had written and published in October, 2009. I needed some content to kick off my blog, so it’s added here, with some small tweaks.]