Father’s Day and Anniversary in Brela

Post originally written June 21.

There are days when things just seem to break your way.  Days when all of those, “Am I where I should be?” type of questions seem to get answered.  Sure, there are the still those days in between to contend with but today was one of those days that you really live for.

I woke up this morning, not knowing that yesterday was Father’s day.  I had sent my dad a Father’s day gift before I left and wished him a happy one in absentia, but nobody wished me a happy Father’s day yesterday and I completely spaced it off.  (Hello, free pass on forgotten anniversary in the future!)  I’m not mad, just setting up the story…  But this morning I got up and there were a bunch of missed calls on my mobile phone, all forwarded from Skype.  Father’s day wishes, I presume.  It’s my 4th Father’s day and I still cant’ get used to the fact that it’s a holiday for me.  Funny, seems Mrs. NH can’t either.

But I digress.  Today, everything clicked into place.  It was a rainy morning, but just after a late lunch, the sun broke out of the clouds and the sea shone like a plate of glass.  We were all ready to hit it with gusto.  We strapped Little NH into her swim vest (a 21st Century version of floaties) and set off into the surf.  She walked around in the shallows for a minute and then, all by herself, said she wanted to float on her own.

An hour and a half later, we got out of the water.  She went from the shallows to the deep with the grace of a walrus and courage of a lion.  Waves and splashes proved no deterrent and she just kept swimming.  I had to remind myself to keep my agape mouth closed so it didn’t fill with water.  Proud?  You bet.

Yeah, my wife and daughter totally forgot Father’s Day.  But I don’t mind.  Late deliveries are always welcome.  Did I mention that today is Mrs. NH and my 13th wedding anniversary?

Things just keep breaking my way.

Brela – Day 2

Post originally written June 20th…

After rising early yesterday, we had a great night’s sleep, with the windows open and the churn of the sea as our lullaby.  I haven’t slept with windows open to the ocean since family vacations in Mexico when I was a little boy, so this was a real treat.

We hit the ground this morning and set forth working in the kitchen.  Toast, soft-boiled eggs, yogurt, fresh cherries, coffee and cappuccino were the order of the day.  It was the perfect base for a late morning breakfast that gave way to an excellent day on the beach.

We spent the day a 20 minute walk from our apartment, at Punta Rata.  There were no rats to be seen but the beach was great.  No pretense, just lots of small rocks, light surf and partly cloudy skies.  We enjoyed swimming with little NH there.  The water is lots warmer here than anything we experienced in Italy last month. The afternoon was interrupted by a quick rain shower, but we sought shelter in the caves in the rocks behind the beach.  10 minutes later, we were back enjoying the sun and wondering what we ever did to get this lucky.

Finally, as I’m writing this, my belly is warm with sour cherry liqueur (Visnjak) and delicious Croatian grappa.  Silva knocked on our door shortly after we got back from the beach to check and see how everything was going.  She then invited us for the aforementioned toddies.  Yum, yum, yum.  And what a neat lady.  These trips always teach you something.  Who knew I’d see a little bit of myself in a Grandmother born in Croatia.

Brela – Day 1

Post originally written June 19th…

This time yesterday, I was sitting in the office working.  Now, 20 hours after leaving Prague, I’m sitting on a balcony, overlooking the Adriatic.  I’ve been through four countries, one time zone, a few downpours and lots of chatter from the back seat.  But we all made it.

We were greeted by the matriarch of the apartment, “Silva”, who had prepared a Dalmatian prosciutto and Pag cheese plate.  To wash it all down she left us a delicious decanter of her home-made red wine.  I’ve been here an hour, folks, and it’s already one of my favorite places on earth.  Sardegna, eat your heart out.