Trial by Fire

Okay, even though the fire is 92,000,000 miles away, it was a HOT day in Dubrovnik. Our hotel restaurant has outdoor seating overlooking the small bay and harbor at Cavtat. It is a blessing to be able to eat outdoors: anywhere indoors just feels oppressive.

We loaded the buses up and took the 30 minute drive to the Pile Gate of the old walled city. The tour gave us a bit of perspective on the older history of Dubrovnik, as well as the more recent disputes. While much has been repaired, pock marks from shrapnel still speckle the facades of some of the older buildings.

After the guided tour, a smaller group of friends did a little shopping, then sought out the breeziest, shadiest spot for a cold beverage and octopus and Greek salads. While it was out of the hubbub of the lower streets, it was nice to be away from the crowds.

We made the rounds to several churches and the synagogue, and then hiked outside the walls to the gondolas that take you to the top of Mount Srd. (No, I did not leave out the vowels – that’s really how it is spelled.) We did a little shopping in the gift shop, and then moved to the outdoor cafe for the breeze and a cold drink. (Notice a pattern here?)

By the time we returned to the old city, the sun was lower, and some cloud cover had moved in. We climbed to the top of the wall: you can walk the entire wall – about 2 kilometers. Beautiful views of the tile rooftops and spires, all set against the blue blue blue Adriatic Sea.

Then, it was on to more shade, breeze and food before our concert. We stuffed ourselves into our concert clothes, and headed off to the cathedral. It was a bit of a small space to squeeze ourselves up in the front, but we had a “full house.” Besides our own “groupies,” we had actually recruited some of our audience on the flights to Dubrovnik, while a few others wandered in when they heard us rehearsing. Particularly surprising was to find two people from Watsonville: a reporter from the local paper, and Nita Gizdich, U-pick farmer, pie-maker extraordinaire, and Watsonville luminary. So nice to see an unexpected face in the crowd!

A scoop of gelato on the way back to the bus after the concert helped to cool off, and a celebratory cocktail at the hotel capped the night. I’m really liking aperol spritzers…

Posting and photos are delayed because the wifi is not working. Hope to have a better connection tomorrow.

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