Friday, 04 December 2020
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

Fish and chips, English marmalade, fudge and sticky toffee pudding all go on sale tomorrow in Lidl’s across Croatia.

The German supermarket giant regularly offers weeks of international foods and this week is the turn of Great Britain and Ireland. If you were missing the aroma of smoked bacon in the morning, then from tomorrow the 16th of August you’ll be able to pick up a packet or two at your local Lidl.

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Ex-pats living in Croatia often crave specific foods that remind them of home, from cheddar cheese to traditional chutneys, so for a week, or while stocks last you can stockpile a few of these old favourites.

The Dubrovnik heat wave is showing no signs of slowly up, or cooling down, as the Croatian National Metrological Service have once again issues a yellow warning for the Dubrovnik region. Today temperatures are expected to reach 30 degrees and combined with an extremely high level of humidity the weather could be described as hot and sticky.

Scattered clouds are keeping temperatures a little lower than of late but the yellow warning is proof that today will be the weather conditions will be challenging.

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People are being advised to take water and wear sun cream as well as to stay out of the sun in the middle of the day. The yellow warning will also be in effect tomorrow when temperatures are expected to reach 34 degrees.

The Adriatic Sea is the warmest it has been all year with temperatures officially measuring 26 degrees in the middle of the day. However there have also been unofficial reports form the Konavle region that the sea has reached 29 degrees.

The music program of the Dubrovnik Summer Festival will continue with a unique concert that will be held under the title Guitarrismo on Thursday, August 16th, at 9.30 pm in the atrium of the Rector’s Palace. Eight excellent guitarists will share the stage: Zoran Dukić, Petrit Çeku, Morana Pešutić, Tomislav Vukšić, Tvrtko Sarić, Krešimir Bedek, Pedro Ribeiro Rodrigues and Maroje Brčić. With the selection of the best compositions and arrangements for different guitar compositions, the concert also features the premiere of Goran Tudor’s piece for eight guitars - Bašamar.

A unique concert experience brings a rich and special program prepared for this occasion. The festival audience will have a chance to hear Concerto for Four Violins and Strings in B minor by Antonio Vivaldi, originally composed for four solo violins and cello, arranged by Petrit Çeku for eight guitars. The program will also feature the music from the ballet El Sombrero de Tres Picos byManuel de Falla which was revolutionary by introducing the techniques of Spanish dances for the first time on the ballet stage. Because of this, most of the music is made up of dances such as farucca, fandango and seguidillas. The work consists of three passages that Darko Petrinjak arranged for the trio of guitars. The concert program will also feature the famous composer Astor Piazzolla; Invierno Porteño will be played - the last installment of Piazzoli's most famous concert, a monumental greeting to Vivaldi called the Four Seasons of Buenos Aires. The arrangement of the violin and orchestra concert by the great Latvian violinist Gidon Kremer is well-known and the audience had an opportunity to listen to it at the Dubrovnik Summer Festival 2013, while the program of this concert includes Krešimir Bedek's arrangement for four guitars. The program also includes the work of the jurist and composer Ivo Josipović Drmeš for Penderecki and eight guitars.

The concert also includes the premiere of the work of Goran Tudor, created for this year's Dubrovnik Summer Festival, which is a single-song arrangement for eight guitars in the 12/8 degree, entitled Bašamar. The song was written this spring, and it is devoted to Tudor's colleagues, guitarists who will have the honor to perform it first. It is written specifically for the space of the Rector's Palace. According to the composer: "Bašamar is an archaic Dubrovnik word for the shoal of fish, and it corresponds to me by meaning and sound as well as to the fact that the etymological expression is not easy to interpret just as it is not always clear in the composition what is the origin of its motifs, and rhythm. " The Afro-Brazilian rhythms and melodies have been carefully absorbed in most of Paulo Bellinati's work, as well as Jongo, which will be performed at this concert. After the original version for the two guitars, the piece was followed by numerous changes by the author himself, including the jazz ensemble and orchestra, guitar and orchestra and solo guitar. For the latter version, composed in 1982, Bellinati won the first prize in 1988 at the eighth Carrefour Mondial de Guitare in Martinique. At the program of the concert, there is also the fourth installment of Fandango, from the Quintet for Guitar and Strings by Luigi Boccherini, arranged by British guitarist Jeremy Spark, which is a part of the standard guitarist quartet repertoire and also of this concert.

The tickets for the unique concert Guitarrismo are available online and at the Box Office in the Festival Palace (Od Sigurate 1), every day from 9 am to 9.30 pm, as well as on the location two hours before the start of the performance.

Today, the 15th of August, is a public holiday in Croatia, the Feast of Saint Mary the Virgin or the Assumption of Mary. Most shops will be closed or at least be working half days in Croatia today, although bars, restaurants and hospitality objects along the coastline in tourist areas will all be open.

The Assumption of Mary into Heaven (often shortened to the Assumption) is, according to the beliefs of the Catholic Church, Eastern and Oriental Orthodoxy, as well as parts of Anglicanism, the bodily taking up of the Virgin Mary into Heaven at the end of her earthly life.

The second best scorer in the history of the Croatian national team with 33 goals in 89 games has decided to hang up his boots and retire from international football.

Mario Mandžukić, who shone at the 2018 World Cup in Russia, has retired from the Croatian national tram at the age of 32.

He commented that “As much as silver fills me with new energy, it has made it easier for me to make this impossible decision. We have experienced our dreams, they have made historical success and I felt the incredible love of fans. It was the most beautiful trip with the team and the best return home.”

Adding that “There is no ideal time to go. If we can, I believe that we all would play for Croatia while we live because there is no bigger pride. But I feel that the moment is for me now. I did my best to contribute to the greatest success of Croatian football.”

Every day in Croatia around 60 people are diagnosed with some form of cancer. According to the Croatian Health Institute every year in Croatia over 22,000 people are diagnosed with cancer and over 14,000 lose the battle with the disease.

“We don’t have a plan for fighting the biggest health threat of the modern age, which is cancer. For me, that is alarming, and we need a plan to battle this disease since our success rate is the worst in all of Europe,” commented Dr Eduard Vrdoljak from the Oncology and Radiotherapy Department in the University Hospital Split.

The number of people diagnosed in Croatia every year with cancer has been rising steadily for the past few decades. And Croatia, along with Hungary, have the highest cancer mortality rates in the whole of the European Union.

According to data by The Lancet, one of the world’s most prestigious medical journals, Croatia is among the five European countries with the lowest survival rates for lung cancer, which only 10 percent patients survive, prostate cancer (81 percent), stomach (20 percent), colon (51 percent, rectal 48 percent), and adult myeloid leukemia (32 percent).

The former Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa bin Hamad, and member of the ruling Qatari Royal Family paid a flying visit to the island of Korcula yesterday.

The Sheikh spent a few days on the island last August and clearly he enjoyed the island as yesterday he came back for another visit. Sailing on the luxury yacht Katara, which set back the Sheikh a massive $300 million, he arrived on a fast tender into the coastline destination of Lumbarda.

It is believed that he is on the yacht with three of his wives, as well as children and grandchildren. And he took the whole family for a meal in a local restaurant on Korcula. Al Thani was introduced to Korcula by a friend and associate, famous Croatian architect Otto Barić, son of the former Croatian national football team coach, who has a house in the old town.

Hamad seized power in a bloodless palace coup d'état in 1995. During his 18-year rule, Qatar's natural gas production reached 77 million tonnes, making Qatar the richest country in the world per capita with the average income in the country US$86,440 a year per person.

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With the Dubrovnik heat wave in full force and temperatures in the mid-thirties since the beginning of the month cooling off in the Adriatic Sea is a must. As part of the regular testing of the quality of the sea water in the Dubrovnik – Neretva County the 118 beaches were tested from the 23rd of July until the 31st of July.

These regular water quality surveys are carried out throughout the summer months every year. And of the 118 beaches checked a massive 110 passed the test with the highest mark of excellent. The current sea temperature in the Dubrovnik region is around 26 degrees, although it is a little cooler early in the morning, so jump on in the water is clean and warm.

The Voice of Dubrovnik

THE VOICE OF DUBROVNIK


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