Sunday, May 20, 2007
A Day At The Market
Anastasia: It is Sunday and the whole of Zagreb is shut down. We walk down the streets to find less people than the day before. We walk down to the open market where all the church goers seem to congregate in the late morning. There was fresh fruit and vegetables here yesterday, with the big attraction being the strawberries. They were everywhere, and so sweet and wonderful! Today it is a more like a flea market. There were aisles and aisles of people selling handmade lace, which is a big draw. Also, there were a lot of old coins in boxes. These were Roman coins, old dinar, etc. We saw old telephones, records such as Ray Coniff being played on an old fashioned Victrola, old pocket watches, and Turkish coffee sets. We made a connection with a woman who was a lawyer but sold wonderful gemstone necklaces on the side and we purchased some turquoise, Mother-of-Pearl and coral. We also found boxes and boxes of old church keys and pull knobs. The most amazing and eclectic items were found and discovered.
We also found original artwork and were drawn to one particular gentleman's work. His name is Zlatan Pintek and he is finishing up his art degree this year. He was busy editing a paper while selling his work. We asked him about one of his pieces, the one with barbed wire. He told us that his English was not good but then explained it was a picture of his grandfather's homeland. The wire was him locking it up for safekeeping. I found it most intriguing. I gave him our blog address and invite him to further explain if he wishes, but the feeling of his work is deep and moving. He gave us a pamphlet from one of his previous art openings. It was entitled 'baraba + babica' and with my Croatian dictionary I found babica to mean midwife. The first word had no direct English translation, but in Czech it means a machine for excavating, or a digger. That seems to fit how we felt about his work, too. Above is a picture of him.
I recall writing how similar things are around here from the Northwest. Not only is there stinging nettles and horse chestnut trees, but Scotch freakin' broom. Even in Italy. They just call it broom, but it does the same thing to me; makes me miserable. I have been sneezing, blowing, hacking and tearing up non-stop it seems. SO! Tomorrow we head for Istria and we will visit a toplice. This is a place where thermal hot springs are and the one we will be going to is claimed as the oldest one established by the Romans. We will stay for three days and ask them for a package that might help me with my allergy symptoms. The homeopathics I found here in Zagreb have exactly the same ingredients as the homeopathics at home, and it's not really helping me. Let's see if I can sweat it out! By the way, we all have gotten so excited to see you all posting or reading in. We feel encouraged, supported and loved and we are so happy to have you with us!