Sunday, 24 January 2021
Mark Thomas

Mark Thomas

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.

Email: mark.thomas@dubrovnik-times.com

Hailstones rained down on Dubrovnik this morning! The changeable “four seasons in one day” weather that has dominated the skies over the wider Dubrovnik region in 2021 continued today with a hailstorm.

We have already had all types of weather this year, from dramatic rainbows to bright sunshine, and now it’s the turn of hail. And as temperatures are around 13 degrees currently in the city the hail melted relatively quickly, although it did cause some problems with traffic.

Check out this reader’s video sent to us and don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel for more Dubrovnik videos

In the last 24 hours, 696 new cases of Covid-19 virus were recorded, and the number of active cases in Croatia today is a total of 6,444.

There are currently 2,453 people in hospital across Croatia and 211 people on ventilators.

Unfortunately, a further 56 people have passed away due to the virus.

Since February 25, 2020, when the first case of infection was recorded in Croatia, a total of 212,958 people have been infected with the new coronavirus, of which 4,072 have died, a total of 2,02442 have recovered, of which 1,142 recovered in the last 24 hours.

There are currently 18,299 people in self-isolation.

To date, a total of 1,02091 people have been tested, of which 5,611 were tested in the last 24 hours.

 

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Goodbye and never come back 2020! A new start and a much brighter future. So in a year to forget what do you remember? As we’re finishing this terrible year it’s time to find the silver linings in the black clouds of 2020. Let’s think pink!

A global pandemic, is just that – global. So with everyone in the same boat we saw lots of creativity in the face of adversity. Here is my list of the top fourteen (yes, it’s an unusual number but it’s been an unusual year) things to celebrate from this year, and they are in no particular order.

1) The planet had a chance to hit the refresh button and relax from our constant pollution. Remember the story that the Himalayas were seen for the first time in years from India. And closer to home the Old City breathed a sigh of relief as its stone streets weren’t crammed to overcrowding.

2) People explored the beauty around them rather than foreign destinations. “Staycation” was the buzz word in the travel industry this year. And once again the diversity of Croatia surprised me.

3) We all got a crash course in Zoom. The older members of my family drastically improved their tech skills, from Instagram to FaceTime, social distancing brought virtual reality.

4) Working from home is the new norm, and I have a feeling it’s here to stay. Dining room tables were converted into our offices and the commute was from the bathroom to the living room. Consequently, we spent much less on petrol this year. And wearing our pyjamas to work was liberating.

5) We learned the hard way to appreciate what we had until now taken for granted. It was a tough year for culture and we all realised that those concerts, dramas and exhibitions were an important part of life’s rich tapestry.

 

 

6) We all got a little retro. From drive-in cinemas, to drive-through restaurants and even board games. Yes, board games made a comeback as families connected around the table. Yes, there were fights, but there was also laughter, and I’m speaking from my own experience.

7) The online shopping culture accelerated, although Dubrovnik is still behind the curve. Some green shots of optimism sprung up as businesses thought outside the box.

8) Cleanliness! Again we were reminded of the importance of washing our hands.

9) Dubrovnik, again probably the hard way, learnt that it is far too dependent on one branch – tourism. Clearly one of the most fragile and unstable sources of income to be dependent on. Without tourists we can’t survive, and that’s not a healthy place to find yourself in.

10) Sport without spectators just isn’t the same. It’s like sex without foreplay. Sport unites us.

11) Our healthcare workers showed their incredible dedication and professionalism. These were the real heroes in this fight against the pandemic and they deserve all the praise that has been heaped on them. Hopefully they will be awarded and won’t in the future have to leave Ireland or Sweden to earn what a decent living.

12) We learned to cook! Well we had to time on our hands and instant access to recipes from leading chefs. From homemade bread to cakes, hopefully some of this knowledge will stick (and by stick I don’t mean to the pan as in my case).

13) Not only did we learn to appreciate the work of healthcare workers but we also realised just how difficult it is to home-school our children. Hats off to teachers for all their hard work.

14) And finally we survived! That’s the most important. 2020 throw a lot at us all and we survived. Yes, it will take some time to get back to normal life, whatever that means, but we got through it. We entered the darkest and longest tunnel and together we all pulled together and made it through to the brighter side. The strength that we have all acquired from this challenge will be a priceless tool in the future. We’ve been running in mud for a year and now the sight of asphalt is on the horizon. Imagine just how faster and easier it’ll be to run on a hard surface. We survived!


Happy New Year and may 2021 bring you hope, strength and prosperity!

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In the Dubrovnik-Neretva County, 23 new cases of coronavirus infection were recorded in the last 24 hours (16 determined by a rapid antigen test).

These new cases are - 11 people from Dubrovnik, five from the Župa Dubrovacka, four from Konavle, two from Ploče and one from Metković.

A total of nine males and 14 females were infected, and an epidemiological link was established for 19 of them.

19 people have made a full recovery - seven from Dubrovnik, three from Orebic, two each from Blato and Korcula, one each from Konavle, Kula Norinska, Ploce and Vela Luka, and one person who does not reside in our county.

31 people tested positive for coronavirus are currently hospitalized in the Dubrovnik General Hospital. Eight patients require intensive care, seven patients are on invasive ventilation, and one is on non-invasive ventilation.

In the last 24 hours, 153 samples were processed, and a total of 33,431 samples have been analysed since the beginning of the pandemic.

There are 549 people in self-isolation, and in the last 24 hours there have been ten violations of the self-isolation measure (nine at border crossings).

 

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The Croatian Red Cross (HCK) reported on Saturday that in the last three days, more than 129 tons of food, 50,000 litres of water and 21,000 hot meals have been distributed in the earthquake-affected areas, and two new locations in Petrinja have been provided for accommodation.

They also distributed 172 heaters, 650 blankets, 39 generators and 700 packages of baby food and equipment.

HCK points out that they also provided psychosocial support for 1,600 people and organized 33 outdoor activities.

"Donations of humanitarian aid in larger quantities that require more complex logistics, and which are not clothing items, can be delivered to the Zagreb Fair, pavilion number 6," said HCK in a statement.

Until yesterday, a total of 36,392,944 Kuna in donations was paid, by both companies and individuals, for earthquake victims and funds are still being collected.

Here is the official Red Cross Link for those wishing to donate to the cause.

The donor phone - 060 90 11 – has so far received 69,169 calls, and collected a total of over 432,000 Kuna.

 

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As of today, January 2, legal changes in Croatia prohibit the use, purchase and possession of firecrackers and fireworks of categories F2 and F3 for personal use throughout the year. The use of pyrotechnics until the mentioned amendments to the act was allowed in the period from 27 December to 1 January.

The data of the Ministry of the Interior speak best about the justification of the ban on pyrotechnics for personal purposes. Namely, the Ministry of the Interior reported that after New Year's Eve, three people were seriously injured when using pyrotechnics, despite appeals from the Ministry of the Interior to refrain from using pyrotechnics, because of the victims of the catastrophic earthquake and people traumatized by earthquakes.

It is incredible that when Croatia and Croatians came together to support the victims of the massive earthquake that a few people still had the “need” to light fireworks and let off firecrackers.

Firecrackers have been proven to harm pets and other fauna. 'Animal Friends' points out that this ban is important for Croatia, for all its citizens, as well as for all animals.

 

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Today in Croatia, is the Day of Mourning for the victims of the earthquake that hit Sisak-Moslavina and the surrounding counties on December 29, took seven lives and caused great material damage.

The day of mourning is marked by the obligatory display of the flag of the Republic of Croatia at half-mast on all buildings in which state authorities and bodies of local and regional self-government units are located, and buildings in which the activity of legal entities is located or is performed.

Entertainment events cannot be held on the Day of Mourning, and legal entities that perform television and radio activities should adapt their programs to the celebration of the Day of Mourning, especially by broadcasting programs that by their nature correspond to the marking of the day.

The government made the decision to declare a Day of Mourning at a session on December 30, the day after a devastating earthquake that killed seven people.

 

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In the last 24 hours, two new cases of coronavirus infection have been recorded in Dubrovnik-Neretva County. It must be taken into account that over the holiday period fewer people were tested and in the past 24 hours only 40 tests were carried out in the county.

These new cases are one male and one female from Dubrovnik. An epidemiological link has been established for both individuals.

On a positive note 24 people have made a full recovery - 12 from Dubrovnik, three from Metković and Ploče, and one each from the Dubrovacko Primorje, Konavle, Kula Norinska and Opuzen.

31 people tested positive for coronavirus are currently hospitalized in the Dubrovnik General Hospital. Eight patients require intensive care, seven patients are on invasive ventilation, and one is on non-invasive ventilation.

In the last 24 hours, 40 samples were processed, and a total of 33,278 samples have been analysed since the beginning of the pandemic.

There are 588 people in self-isolation, and in the last 24 hours there have been two violations of the self-isolation measure (both at border crossings).

 

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