25 November 2016

honeymoon in croatia | trogir.

in trogir -- a walled city on a tiny island, edged by thick olive groves and snowcapped mountains kissing the clouds -- we truly lost track of our days. we woke by the sun, we slept by the moon, and we spent days wending through narrow, webbed, marble streets, drinking in the details. lemon trees, heavy with fruit, and the way their shadows fall like lace. medieval columns and terra cotta loggias. ancient coats of arms, regal over doorways. the square, bustling with conversation and espresso when the weather is fine. the corner bakery with marmalade pastries and chocolate twists, doughy and sweet, on offer. the cathedral's song of a colorful, maritime history -- statues of mermaids, centaurs, and god himself, peeking down from the heavens. our hosts' dreamy courtyard, lush with potted herbs, hanging laundry, cut firewood, and jars of grappa, turning in the sun.

and our hosts, oh our hosts. tatjana and kaja are the very reason we so treasure our stay in trogir. we connected with them over airbnb and were charmed by their thirteenth century family home -- occupied by kaja's family for three centuries! -- and the idea that tatjana teaches cooking classes in their kitchen, never anticipating that we'd make dear friends during our stay in their guesthouse. our first morning in trogir, we tagged along on their olive harvest. we made way slowly through the grove as kaja taught us all about the growing season and the gathering cues of mother nature herself. in a world where so much is digital, so much is machine-made, we delighted in the knowledge that, when it comes to harvesting olives and pressing them into oil, the rhythm of the sun reigns supreme.

as a generous gesture of thanks for working in the grove, tatjana invited us to their table for a traditional croatian meal. we lunched with their family for hours, sharing soup and local fish and mandarin cake drizzled in warm chocolate. we traded jokes and tales, and when talk turned to american politics, tatjana served up her very own cherry brandy, made in the sun over forty days.

when we pulled over the bridge from trogir, it was with happy, full hearts and a bottle of homemade walnut grappa tucked in our bag. six days home, trogir is the place we return to in our conversations, in our dreams. it was, in a word, enchanting.

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