Mark Thomas - The editor and big chief of The Dubrovnik Times. Born in the UK he has been living and working in Dubrovnik since 1998, yes he is one of the rare “old hands.” A unique insight into both British and Croatian life and culture, Mark is often known as just “Englez” or Englishman. He is a traveller, a current affairs freak and a huge AFC Wimbledon fan.
British Health Minister Matt Hancock is worried about the second wave of the epidemic in Europe and said on Thursday that the government would, in the coming days, return quarantines for arrivals from several countries he did not name.
Britain last week reintroduced a fourteen-day quarantine for passengers upon arrival in Spain.
In some other European countries that are currently quarantined, the number of infections is rising, Hancock said.
“I think the second wave is starting all over Europe and we need to do something to prevent it from reaching our shores,” Hancock said in an interview with Sky News.
"We are very worried about the second wave. And it's not just Spain ... there are other countries where the number is growing. And we are absolutely determined to do everything to keep our country safe," he said.
Asked if there would be a change in the list of countries in the coming days, Hancock told the BBC "Yes ... we have to be realistic about those changes, because the pandemic is changing in other countries".
He also announced that the authorities will do everything they can to shorten the quarantine time for people coming from Spain, but it will not be right now.
"Until it is absolutely certain that we can implement change, we cannot go with it. There will be no change for the next few days," he said.
The Politico.eu portal announced on Wednesday that England is preparing to introduce quarantine for passengers from Belgium and Luxembourg due to the growing number of infected people in those countries. Croatia has been placed on the list of countries where the situation is being monitored, the portal announced, without giving details.
In the past 24 hours, 41 new cases of Covid-19 have been recorded in Croatia, meaning that the current number of active cases has reached 749.
There are currently 133 patients in hospital across the country, of which 9 people are on ventilators. Unfortunately, over the past 24 hours another people has passed away due to the virus.
Since February 25, 2020, when the first case of infection was recorded in Croatia, a total of 4,923 people have been infected with the new coronavirus, of which 140 have died and 4,034 have recovered.
There are currently 2915 people in self-isolation.
To date, a total of 114,090 people have been tested, 1,256 of them in the last 24 hours, the National Civil Protection Headquarters said on Tuesday.
In the past 24 hours four new cases of Covid-19 have been detected in the Dubrovnik – Neretva County.
These new cases include a younger male resident of Dubrovnik and a younger male person from Metković for whom an epidemiological link has been established, and a younger female person from Župa and an older male person who resides in Bosnia and Herzegovina, who became infected in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
On a positive note 12 people in the county have made a full recovery, 7 from Dubrovnik, 4 from Župa and 1 from Ploče.
Two people are currently hospitalized in the Dubrovnik General Hospital. Since the beginning of the pandemic, 5,844 samples have been sent to Zagreb for analysis.
There are 183 people in self-isolation, and in the last 24 hours no violation of the self-isolation measure has been established.
“What did we learn from all this?”, I find myself asking.
The answer came to me spending time with some of the Konavle locals, whose vision for the future is going back to the past to how we used to live.
Without a doubt, what we have experienced in these times is that we can’t take anything for granted, the future is uncertain, and those structures that we had come to rely on are now so unstable, we are being forced to look at things differently.
I’ve long wondered whether we have over-complicated our lives, and we have moved so far away from a natural way of existing, that we’ve disconnected with our home – the Earth.
From the hours we spend in offices, working on devices, to how we eat, how we travel, and even what we do to our bodies, it seems that the way we live has become so artificial, it’s no wonder that as human beings and as a planet we are struggling.
Chatting with the Primic family up in Sokol Grad, we agreed that we need to go “back to nature”. Djuro was a well-known local butcher, who grew up in Konavle, so he remembers the time when families were all self-sufficient, they worked the land all year round and lived on what they produced.
Djuro talks about the “Circle of Life”, which many of us will recognise from The Lion King, yet it perhaps holds the key not just to environmental sustainability, but to our survival.
Back in the day, people would work the land all year round and they would have everything they needed. First they grew the crops that would feed the animals – a few cows, goats and some chickens. The animals would produce food all year round, but also the best manure for the next lot of crops, and so the circle continued.
This particular day, I am trying out the chillies from their garden. I’m super excited because Devika, Djuro’s wife, makes curries that you can buy to take away. It’s really popular with the tourists looking for a change of cuisine, but what’s really special for me is that I know it’s going to be the very best produce from their garden, a million times better than any supermarket-bought food.
What seems to have been forgotten in the modern world is that nature provides everything we need to sustain ourselves. By planting a garden, even if it’s just a few vegetables and herbs, is good for us and it’s good for the planet.
It’s a back-to-basics approach that has been adopted by another local, Andro, who has taken an unused piece of his family’s land up the hill in Durinici, and he’s creating a space for people to come and stay to learn how to survive in the wild.
He is especially passionate about teaching children how to sustain themselves. As a father of four, he thinks it’s vital that he passes on the knowledge of how to be self-sufficient, especially in these times of uncertainty.
I think he’s spot on.
We are creatures of nature, this planet is our home, and with respect for everything it offers us, perhaps we can re-learn how to live in a way that is more sustainable and in the event we have another situation like this global pandemic, everyone is able to survive off the land (and the sea – let’s not forget fishing!).
At the moment, it’s just a dream for me, as I don’t have the land yet, but I’m inspired and I’m already thinking of what small changes I can make in my life to start to become more self-sufficient. I believe that we should be the change we want to see in the world, and that it all starts with a change of mindset.
Mine is going “back to basics”, and learning from the locals in Molunat a more simple way of living, in tune with the rhythms of nature.
It’s nothing new, it’s just “re-wilding”, going back to our roots, and it’s good for us and it’s good for the planet.
To learn more about life in Molunat go to www.lovemolunat.com
Gillie Sutherland grew up in the north of England, before settling in Devon, but has now swapped her UK address for one on the Adriatic in the very south of Croatia, in Molunat. A professional yoga trainer she now runs retreats and online courses from her Konavle base. She also writes a weekly column for the Devon newspaper, The Express and Echo. Keep in touch with Gillie via her yoga website - www.yogamolunat.life
For more information on healing holidays in Croatia visit www.lovemolunat.com
Yesterday there were 65 new cases of Covid-19 recorded in Croatia and the number of active cases across the country has reached a total of 855. Among them, 142 patients are in hospital, of which 9 are on a ventilator, and unfortunately three people have died.
Since February 25, 2020, when the first case of infection was recorded in Croatia, a total of 4,857 people have been infected with the new coronavirus to date, of whom 136 have died and 3,866 have recovered.
There are currently 3271 people in self-isolation.
To date, a total of 112,003 people have been tested, of which 1,489 in the last 24 hours, the National Civil Protection Headquarters announced on Sunday.
In the past 24 hours, no new cases of covid-19 have been recored in the Dubrovnik-Neretva County. And on a positive note 6 people have made a full recovery, 4 from Župa, 1 from Dubrovnik and 1 from Metković.
A total of 2 people are currently hospitalized in the Dubrovnik General Hospital, and nobody is on a ventialor. Since the beginning of the pandemic, 5,737 samples have been sent to Zagreb for analysis.
There are 216 people in self-isolation, and in the last 24 hours no violation of the self-isolation measure has been established.
Croatia has seen the largest drop in sales of new cars across the whole of the European Union. In the first half of this year new car sales in Croatia fell by a massive 54.4 percent, reported the Croatian Chamber of Commerce.
The number of new car registrations on the Croatian market fell by 54.4 percent compared to the first half of last year. Spain is in second place with a 50.9 percent drop, and Portugal is third with a 49.6 percent drop. Sales also fell by more than 40 percent in Italy (-46.1 percent), Bulgaria (-44.5 percent) and Greece (-44.2 percent), while the average of all EU member states (EU-27) is 38.1 percent.
Statistics show that the market has fallen the most in southern European and Mediterranean countries, and what they have in common is that they are all significantly dependent on tourism.
Namely, the decline in tourist traffic has reduced the demand for rent-a-car vehicles, which account for a significant share of new vehicle sales in all tourist countries. For example, in Croatia, in the first half of last year, every second new vehicle was registered for rental purposes, and as market disruptions coincided with the traditional months of the largest deliveries of vehicles to rent-a-car businesses (April and May), this led to such figures.
In most member states of the European Union, sales of new vehicles fell between 30 and 40 percent, and only in eight member states by less than 30 percent.
Over the past 24 hours there have been 77 new cases of Covid-19 in the Republic of Croatia and unfortunately five people have passed away due to the virus.
In Croatia today there are currently 881 active cases of Covid-19, which is 151 less than Friday, reported the National Civil Protection Headquarters. Among these cases there are 134 people in hospital, of which 9 people are on a ventilator.
Since 25 February 2020, when the first case of infection was recorded in Croatia, a total of 4,792 people have been infected Covid-19. In total 133 people have died in Croatia since the pandemic began and 3,778 people have made a full recovery.
There are currently 3,350 people in self-isolation across the country.
To date, a total of 110,514 people have been tested, of which 1,156 were tested in the last 24 hours.