Tuesday, 17 September 2019
The Restless Native The Restless Native

Beach Blues

By  Jul 15, 2016

I don’t go to the beach. It’s not that I don’t want to; I just can’t find the time. Trying to run a private business tied to the summer season in Dubrovnik can be pretty exhausting. There are no days off and stress levels are such that even when you find the time to do something like that, you simply don’t feel like it. This is why I am doomed to walk the earth six months out of a year with those ridiculous t-shirt tan lines where your torso is left pale while your arms and head are Caribbean-bronzed. It’s not flattering at all.

There is one more reason for my lack of beach enthusiasm. My grandparents on my mother’s side used to live on one of the islands of the local archipelago and I spent my summers there growing up. This meant the entire island was my playground. My cousins and I could always find a perfect spot away from the crowds regardless of whether we wanted to go swimming, cliff diving, snorkelling, or anything else we might think of. Every day was a beach day. So, you could say I’m just a tad bit spoilt when it comes to everybody’s favourite summertime activity. Trying to find a spot to lay down my towel in the middle of an overcrowded city beach among hundreds of sweating people and screaming children is not my idea of a good time. No, I’m used to a completely different experience.

We would make our way barefoot through the village and the nearby woods, trying to avoid sharp rocks along the footpath. After about 15 minutes of walking, beyond a flimsy old hand railing, a breath taking sight of sea cliffs descending down into a small rocky cove would make us pause for just a second, before racing to an old staircase leading all the way down to the cove. There, huge rocks which tore away from the cliff centuries ago formed natural sun bathing platforms, small pools of sea water, and underwater pits and crevices perfect for exploring while snorkelling. When entering the water I would be facing a dark blue vastness disappearing on the horizon. Behind me, tall cliffs lined with crooked cypress trees. Dancing around them, swooping swallows and swifts. Underneath the surface of the sea, silence. The kind of silence that is hard to bear for a human. A perfect place to simply float, suspended on the calm waters, facing the skies. Content and peaceful.

It makes a regular beach with an overpriced bar and plastic sun beds for hire look pretty drab if you ask me. I’m hoping to go back to my favourite island one of these days, as it’s been too long since I last visited. After all, isn’t that how life works? The moment you start appreciating things you took for granted as a child, you find they’ve become distant and scarce, and all you are left with is a yearning to go back in time and re-live those perfect moments.

Bozidar Jukic is a Dubrovnik local with too many interests to name them all, with writing being at the very top of the list. He is a lover of good food, music and film, and a firm believer in the healing power of laughter. His professional orientation is towards tourism and travel so it comes as no surprise he spends most of his time alongside Mrs. Jukic running their own local tour company. Their goal is helping travellers from all over the world get a more intimate experience of Dubrovnik and what it has to offer. To find out more about their work, visit their website or Facebook page.


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