Once I had a dream to rent a flat in Italy and pretend I live there. Just for some weeks. Cook pasta, open a bottle of white wine and eat my dinner on the balcony. And just now I realized – I don’t need that anymore. Here I am – back in Rovinj, melting with happiness. Renting a flat. For some weeks. Cooking my pasta. A bottle of local liquor stored. No balcony though, but there is an amazing sunset show just outside of my window. So I open my windows and sit with my pasta on the window sill. Which restaurant has a view compared to mine from the flat under the roof?
That apartment is amazing too (I am afraid, the word “amazing” will be repeated hundred times in this text, or some other superlative adjectives. Sorry, not sorry). It sits in the top of the old house, with windows in every direction. To wake up to those views of the rooftops and church silhouettes and listen to the seagulls screaming their morning songs – that is a miracle in itself (the header photo in this blog was taken from those windows).
First night here I was not overwhelmed by emotions – my soul didn’t land yet, though my mind realized the fact. The second day there were no emotions of wonder either – it felt like I came home, so why getting surprised. The sound of Slavic speech feels so native, the sun kisses welcome kisses on my cheeks, the streets reveal houses and windows that I know oh so well. They are forever sealed by my taking the photos and admiring them over and over again while sharing them here on the blog.
Then there are people. Peter, owner of our flat, that is almost like a family member. We sit again in his flat, drinking kruskovac, sharing our stories in a mix of German, Russian and Croatian (he doesn’t speak English, so it is a language dance every time). Darko, the waiter of “our” restaurant doesn’t work there anymore, but we bump into him on the street. He invites us to the restaurant where he works now (restaurant “Dream”, I give it 5 stars and totally recommend it. Don’t get turned off by the simple name. Hidden in the cozy narrow street it has class and serves risotto with truffles that almost made me lick the plate). And when I show up, he welcomes me with a kiss on a cheek.
There is the eternal beauty of this romantic town, the sea breeze and schnapps on the house. Pretty dresses, the sound of waves, good food. Add to it a thousand dancers coming here for Summer Sensual Days Festival, making new friends, smiles and jokes everywhere, party nonstop – and you get a recipe for my own paradise. And who would say no? Would you say no?
At the registration office there is a huge glass full of paper stripes – “take a happy thought”, it says. I love grabbing a couple of them, stuffing into my shorts pockets, take it out when I forgot about them and smile. This year’s message reads like that: “At the end of the day your feet should be dirty, your hair messy, and your eyes sparkling”. I can totally guarantee that I live by this rule here. Getting home at 5 in the morning, walking from the party while the town awakes. When sleeplessness turns out my mind and plunges me into here and now. Listening to the waves splashing at my feet. To the seagulls who take over the town in this early hour like a Neapolitan mafia and scream with their sharp voices. The breeze caresses hair. The sight of boats on water is so fresh. I stand for a while and meditatively observe the flags gently waving in the wind. This sensual days festival wakes up all my senses – in every sense (pun intended).
Dare to dream, dare to love more and dare to open your heart for more emotions and sensations. This is what makes us totally alive.