The rollercoaster ride has only just begun and already we’re oohing and aahing about what we’ve seen and heard from our handsome guide Hrvoje Kuček, Harry to us, with his flawless English.
What? A cemetery as a starting point? You must be kidding until we see Mirogoy and its arcades of tombs in all its splendiferous magnificence. The arcades house the graves of many a famous Croatian but it’s the massive piece of marble near the entrance with no names on it especially reserved for the grim reaper to take his toll, that make me wonder about the haves and have-nots and whether it is at all possible for ‘normal’ Croatians to rest in peace there. I am told it is but slightly further away. Much adored and much adulated is that of the 28-year-old Dražen Petrović who tragically died in a car crash. Zagreb
A hanky, a hatchet, false boobs or just a letter is what makes up this museum
Feeding the pigeons in Ban Jelačić Square turns more into an exercise ritual for these fat birds as we see them scattering before our running feet. Chomping at nectarines and plums at the market just behind the square seems like a better idea and we troll around drooling at all kinds of fruit, vegetables and cheese at laughable prices. The upper town takes us over buried rivers, through the Iron Gate with its holy healing powers at the shrine of Mary to the City Museum built on archaeological finds. Down the road there’s a plaque of the renowned Nikola Tesla, inventor and propagator of alternative current electricity, placed on a wall holding gas lamps which I believe are still being manually lit every evening just to show that the Croatians can be stubborn. Irony is too weak a word. The Museum of Broken Relationships holds a bevvy of quirky memorabilia to remind us all, I’m afraid!
Time for action to get this all down and digested and it’s the Jarun Lake where we’re all geared up to do a spot of rowing. This goes down well and even if Marcio and I cannot keep the boat on track, we love being close to the water and away from the camera crew for a while! Lake side to mountain side and its Medvednica for a climb up the hill and a breath of fresh, green, cool air and vistas over Zagreb to end this exhilarating day.