Thursday, 30 October 2014

There are some things in life I am genuinely afraid of loosing
Some moments I genuinely don't want to end.
And when it's all so good, 
When the great happens,
I panic knowing it's existence is merely temporary.
I smile, enjoying it's lifespan, living in it.
& as soon as it all comes to an end,
the pain sets in and the tears freeze behind eyes of acknowledgment. 
In an invisible mind, moulding sculptures of memories that only become
more beautiful with time.
Ancient, priceless, frozen in time.

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

"I don't think depending on one thing alone is good for the country.
You know, Croatia has a lot of land.
If we can have a good relationship with it, we can produce great things."

From two different worlds

Stories of life are worth telling.
Tell them to your children,
tell them to children of the world.
Stay silent and your memories fade into a vast blank canvas.
Tell your stories, share your experiences.
Share your history, talk about your culture, your people, your grandparents.
Open your heart, absorb.
Everyone can spread love and change lives.
One story at a time. 

YOLOSOLO - Day 10

Exhales. Where do I even start to talk about today.

Basically, today's highlight was deep water soloing along the Sustipan Cliffs of Split, just off Marjan Hill.

Along the way to the cliffs, Pacho introduced me to his friends, his baby girl and the mother of their beautiful daughter.

We chatted for a while and off we went.

Over the ledge, and onto the rocks.

Bit by bit we climbed along the cliff.

At my first overhang, I couldn't make it. I dropped straight into the water.

WHOOOOO!!!!!!! The water felt amazing!!

Back onto the rocks and I pulled myself back up onto the rocks.

"Try again" Pacho encouraged.

And I did, and made it!! 

We took breaks in little coves just big enough for 2 persons & chatted about life.

"C'mon let's go, we can't cool down too much"

At our second resting point we hung off a ledge.

At last we decided to head back and swam against the current.

Probably swam for 20 minutes, fighting the waves and boats going by.

But so worth it when we got back to shore.

We had a coffee, chatted about life again & off we went.

I can't really describe how I really treasure this day.

Sometimes you meet people who just connect on such a different level with you even though you come from two different worlds. I told Pacho this whole experience feels like a Pocahonatas dream, and he went on to added grindingly "& that other bad agency, they're the other evil English Sailors huh?" We both laughed, enjoying our little narrative. We bid adieu at Fife, hugging each other farewell. I thanked him for all his warm hospitality and kindess and offered my tips. He almost refused it and I extended my gratitude, expressing how thankful I was for all his guidance. This trip would not have been what it was if not for the amazing hike and DWS experience with him. Off we went, parting way and into Fife I went for black rissoto :) The waiters were really kind, extending warm words of compliments and allowing me to enjoy a silent warm meal after walking in the chilly breeze with wet hair. 

After lunch, then went back to buy the Croatian painting I saw before I left for DWS, some presents for Mom & went to the Riva for another cuppa coffee. Then headed back home to pack and get ready for the travel to Zagreb tomorrow.

YOLOSOLO - Day 9


Glorious. Glorious dinner.
Lamb chops, fresh garlic soaked in extra virgin olive oil.
Grilled vegetables.
A white haired proper and healthy old man with a deep, deep voice answering my every question and asking me questions with 1 word.
"Good?"
"Ay"
"Lamb?"
"Vegetables"

The day started out rocky.
Portal tours had extended an invitation to join the Dubrovnik small group tour & again, after I cancelled my rock climbing activities, they didn't respond to my confirmation.

As before, I called, texted, emailed and no one responded.

I woke up at 530 just to get to their offices by 730 so that I could speak with their staff before pick up.
Waited.. waited.. waited..
The sign on the door said they open at 8.
I waited till 830 and still no signs of anyone.
Finally lost patience and left for croactiveholidays, whom as usual were super responsive and friendly.

Not surprisingly, we could not re-arrange a last minute day of rock climbing and I was advised to hit some islands.

Got my ticket to Brač.

Got to Brač and initially lost my way, where the heck was this tourist information center?!

Finally found it and no surprise, it was closed.
Apparently everything closes on Monday in Brač.
Finally managed to get some help and was given a culture walk map.
Took a short break with a caffe latte and caramel cake along the riva.
The friendly waiter perked me up with his random "no sleep no sleep!"
When I think he thought just because I had my sunnies on I was sleeping. hm.
I took them off and asked if I really looked like I was sleeping.
"Now better" he said.
"One more drink? From me." he said again.
"I already have coffee though" I responded.
"It's ok, from me" he repeated. "Coke?"
"Okay" I responded. 
Coke it was.

Followed the map's route and at the top of the hill I came across a howling dog.
I didn't know what to do.
Why was it chained to the water well?
Where was it's owner?
Did it need help?
Should I free it?
Does it belong to anyone?
I gave it what was left of my water and prayed it would be okay.
I left heart wrenched, really wanting to help.

I reached the bottom and soon arrived at the clear waters of the public baths.
It was essentially a super clear lake that I believe people thought had scared powers.
Sat there for the entire afternoon appreciating the view of the opposite mountains.
Drank my prošek, got a little drunk and started tearing in memory of Lucky's loss.

Finally got to the cemetery which was also beautiful, sat along the piers, watched fishes and the sunset.

Finally left for din dins, finished my marvelous plate of fresh gourmet.

Said my thank you's, praised the food and am back on the ferry heading back to Split.
I swear I must be the only Asian on board.




Monday, 27 October 2014

These moments, these people's warmth, these ancient ruins that sing an inaudible historic folklore as you walk through it's caving pathways

This experience.

It's priceless.

YOLOSOLO - DAY 8

Woke up chatting up my new flatmate, Debra! 
A New Mexico native who's now travelling through Bosnia and Croatia.
We shared travel stories about how she and her friend hitch hiked a SCHOOL BUS because there weren't any buses going to the lake she was heading for.
It was hilarious as little girls with their backpacks passed notes through the bus, running past her and her friend cheekily giggling away.
She even got stopped by the Bosnian police at one point and was saved by a really helpful local who even argued with the police who demanded their grounds for detaining Debra and her friend!

I then finished my coffee and off I went to my hike in Marjan. 

Got the LOVELIEST tour guide, pacho. The hike was too beautiful and his company was too kind. I can't believe how amazingly warm the Croatians are. How is it that people are even this giving and welcoming, so willing to share their country's charm and invite you into their world?

He showed me off trek paths and we jumped off rocks, sat off cliff points and talked about Pocahontas. 

Pacho's travelled to India, Thailand, Kuala Lumpur and Bali. He was extremely understanding towards my random rants about stereotypes towards Asians but validated it very quickly with his warm attitude in general. 

We sat at the top of the hill where the fire watch tower was, also called a "Mushroom" and followed our hike with trekking along some ruins rock climbing paths. 

We met loads of locals whom he knew along the way, stopping to chat up a short conversation, showing me his old apartments & introducing me to a close friend of his after our hike. We had coffee under the sun in a Piazza. The least I could do was to buy them coffee. Pacho had been too kind.

I then went to confirm my trip to Dubrovnik tomorrow. Hopefully it will work out, geez.. (another long story behind this one but LETS KEEP OUR FINGERS CROSS FOR NOW!)

Sat along the promenade for a bit and then went to visit the 1700 year old
church and bell tower. 

I watched the sunset from the top, while korean ahjuma's squealed with excitement all around me ^^ It was great.

YOLOSOLO - Day 7

It was a full day tour to Krka Waterfalls and the coastal town of Sibenik.

The tour group included an English couple - David (biologist) and Judith (teacher), two English girls who also just graduate - Amiee and her polish friend & three Aussies from Sydney who were also visiting Singapore on their way back home!

We trekked and hiked and admired spectacular views. I'm so fortunate to meet such lovely people, I really could not have asked for more. 

At one point David and I were hiking next to each other and I spotted a rodent looking little creature that shun away from our group, running under the boardwalk 

"Ah! Look!" I said, pointing in the creatire's direction.
"What is it?" David asked
He didn't manage to catch sight of it so I explained 
"it's like one of those mice you see in London, the ones you find in the tube"
David answered "Ah right, that's the national history of london for you."
I laughed, loving his wry sense of humor.

Then Amiee and I were marveling at the beauty of the park and it's waterfalls & she said 
"I just can't believe how beautiful it is, it's like we're in a fairy tale"
"Yeh I know right", I said "We're walking in the Chronicles of Narnia & Aslan's gonna run out from the corner"
"& fairies too!" Amiee gleefully responded 
"Oh yes, definitely fairies too. Just like in Maleficent" I answered.

In the evening, I went to fife as recommended by the locals and my host.

Was sat across Scott, a New Yorker turned Californian.

We chatted all through dinner, about travels, dating, life and friends. It was such a delightful dinner, I can't describe this kind of friendliness and vibes, you need to experience it and I hope for everyone who travels solo to meet amazing people like I have.

We walked home through the palace and came across 4 young chaps singing ancient hymns in an open dome.

It was beautiful. 

The night was so beautiful.