Bol to Split; Split to Ljubljana in Slovenia; Bad news for Sheryl; I twist my ankle on the hostel stairs

There’s only one ailing directly from Bol to Split each day, and it leaves at 6:30 in the morning. Taking that ferry was the only chance we’d have to get from Bol all the way to Ljubljana in Slovenia in decent time, though. So we got up at 5:30 (ugh) broke down the tent and packed up, and headed down to the harbour in the dawn light. The ferry got us to Split at 7:30, and we had three hours to wait until our train to Zagreb, which we spent getting groceries and killing time in the park. The train to Zagreb was the mirror image of the train we’d taken from there to Split - no surprise. There ere four very merry retired Scottish vacationers who gave us wine and tried to convince us that chartering a yacht and sailing it around yourself is the best way to travel. I was certainly prepared to grant them their point, especially given how much Sheryl and I had wanted our mythical three-day Adriatic cruise, but I think that sort of travel will have to wait until I’m old and rich like them.

In Zagreb we had an hour and a half, which wasn’t really enough time to get anything done even if we had anything worth doing. I gave Sheryl the mission of spending our last 11 kuna since we were leaving the country, and she discharged her duty admirably, returning with fresh strawberries - a luxury, we hadn’t had them since before leaving home.

The train from Zagreb to Ljubljana was very pretty. Lots of green fields and little cottages overlooked by big green mountains. Ljubljana, on first glance, was crowded with vacationers with lots of money. The river is lined with cafes full of people. We snuck a look at some menus, and sure enough the prices were through the roof. Amid the noise of a Saturday night meat-market of vacationers trying to hook up with other vacationers, harried locals trying to serve them, and love-struck honeymooners drifting blissfully unaware of anything around them, we fought our way to the hostel. It was right on the river and very expensive, but we were tired and hungry and just wanted to stop, plus it was the only hostel we knew about in town, so we took it. It was an immense multi-storey hostel factory with twelve beds in one room - there must have been a hundred beds in the place - at €20 each per night, and the place was nearly full. The amount of money boggles the mind. Hostelling is big business in Europe.

While trying to find our way to our beds, I slipped on a dark staircase while wearing my pack and twisted my ankle quite badly - badly enough that I thought for more than one moment that I’d broken it. It wasn’t actually broken, but it was a bad enough sprain that I limped for the next day.

As I say, we were hungry and tired, but the hostel had computers and one of them was free, so we checked our email before heading out. Sheryl had some terrible news - she found out that her great-aunt had died. She cried and cried, and there was nothing I could say. It makes my unhappy to think that this is somehow part of the deal when you travel for a long time - that some of the people you leave behind might not be there waiting for you when you get back.


2 Comments on this Dispatch:

September 14th, 2008

Weekend of the 6th we had dinner at Keefer to celebrate our anniversary. Jeremy was in the kitchen, nice night. Next weekend your niece escorted us to the market in downtowm St. Catharines, then to Timmy’s( do you miss it ). She is a darling girl. Stay safe you two.

¬ John sometimes known as Dad
September 21st, 2008

a big thought for the two of you with my best memories.
I try to follow you thanks to your map…it s easy now that i’m back in France!
I wish you the very best as you go on! Take care

¬ Emilie
Chris Liberty - Dispatches from a Gentleman Adventurer
Being the internal dialog of a vagabond who chased his own tail across five continents for 4 years and 2 days from May 2008 to May 2012, in search of something that never really became clear.
This travelogue comprises 16,426 photographs and 402,515 words in 307 dispatches written from 335 places in 52 countries on 6 continents around the world.
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