Wednesday, 25 November 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

According to Goran Golubic, the KFC's Chief Manager for Croatia from the AmRest Adria Company, the famous American fast food chain is coming to Split.

Kentucky Fried Chicken, the famous American fast food chain which is best known for its fried chicken, entered the Croatian market five years ago and opened their first restaurant in Zagreb.

After opening six restaurants on several locations including shopping centres in Zagreb, KFC is already preparing for its next step on Croatia's market by opening its doors in the centre of Dalmatia – in the city of Split.

''Yes, that's right, we are planning to open the first Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant in Split by this summer'', said Golubic, adding that they had already found a suitable business location but that they were looking for a few more.

''We've already have some job openings. During this year we are planning to employ around 30 people, whilst our long-term goal is to employ almost 150 people in Split'', commented the head of the AmRest Adria.

Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) dates back to 1930 when Harland Sanders opened the first such restaurant in Louisville, Kentucky. Today KFC has 16,000 restaurants in more than 100 countries worldwide and several million consumers visit the restaurants every day. By the end of 2013 the company recorded revenue of $23 billion.

In spite of the freezing temperatures in Dubrovnik some people are still enjoying a dip in the Adriatic. With temperatures around – 3 degrees the Deputy Mayor of Dubrovnik, Zeljko Raguz, took a swim in the Adriatic in front of the Libertas Rixos Hotel yesterday.

A comment on his Facebook account read “It is – 3 outside, there is snow on the hills, but”
The Deputy Mayor is well-known for swimming in all weathers but at – 3 degrees and with the sea temperature at around 13 degrees this first swim of 2017 was surely a challenge.

swim raguz

Photo Facebook 

Croatia Public Holidays for 2017

1 January - New Year's Day

6 January - Epiphany

17 April - Easter Monday

1 May - Labour Day

15 June - Corpus Christi

22 June - Anti-Fascist Resistance Day

25 June - Statehood Day

5 August - Victory & Homeland Thanksgiving Day

15 August - Assumption of the Virgin Mary

8 October - Independence Day

1 November - All Saints' Day

25 December - Christmas Day

26 December - St. Stephen's Day

The frosty temperatures and blustery northerly winds have brought chaos o the Dubrovnik region over the past few days. Photos of the region under a blanket of white snow or covered in ice have been filling the pages of social media, and this unusual scene caught our eye.

This ice waterfall formed in the village of Orasac, to the north of Dubrovnik, above the Hawaii beach. The plummeting temperatures meant that the normal flowing waters were frozen in their tracks, forming this unusual sight.

ice waterfall

The cold front is hitting all parts of the county with gale force polar winds. The island of Korčula has seen winds over 140 km/h and some smaller boats have been sunk in the harbour. Temperatures this morning on Korčula measured – 3 degrees and with the strong winds the chill factor is extreme.

These stunning photos were taken by Đani Šantek, Marija Šegedin, Mateo Suhot, Tonči Bernetić and Vinka Damjanović.

korcula bura

korcula bura 1

korcula bura 2

korcula bura 3

korcula bura 6

A freezing start to the weekend in Dubrovnik with temperatures this morning touching – 5 degrees. The gale force north winds have brought an icy feel to the city with “Real Feel” temperatures down to – 16 degrees!

It is a cold start to 2017 in Dubrovnik. With many of the mountains and higher areas of the region still covered in snow the winds are bringing bitterly cold temperatures.

The historic Old City of Dubrovnik is being battered with these biting winds as can be seen from our photo gallery this morning.

bura 2017

bura 2017 1

bura 2017 2

bura 2017 4

bura 2017 5

It is said that what you do on the first of the year will be an indicator on what you will do for the rest of the year. If this is true then I am in for a year of rain, crowds of tourists and terrible internet connection, oh and a year of travel without sleep.

Yes, 2017 has arrived, and this festive period I spent in England with my family and friends, and on the 1st of January I was walking the streets of London, almost all day. My family now lives a good 5-hours train ride from the capital, so the journeys back to Dubrovnik now resemble a chapter of “Around the World in 80 Days.” However it also gives us an excuse to spend a day in the most cosmopolitan city in the world. - Let me take you by the hand, and lead you through the streets of London. I'll show you something, to make you change your mind, sang Ralph McTell.

Almost a million tourists, 860,000 to be precise, had descended on London for the New Year’s celebrations, the fireworks and the parties. In other words in one day London received the same amount of tourists that Dubrovnik received in 2016. Madness, total madness, the capital is under siege, every street looks like the Stradun on New Year’s Eve. And as my wife and I tried to stroll along at the pace we would stroll on Stradun we soon got trampled under the mass of foreign boots. “Excuse me,” – “Sorry” – or just “Mind the way,” filled our ears as we gently ambles from shop window to shop window, we were out of tempo with London and it showed.

There is no room for slow motion, here life is always in the fast lane, and it’s a drive-through, coffee-to-go way of existence. “Ah so you guys are from Dubrovnik,” answered a friendly waiter as we chatted whilst he took our order. “I have heard that they filmed Game of Thrones and Star Wars there,” he added. I took the opportunity to ask our waiter a dilemma that had been puzzling me, “Do you guys have Wi-Fi for customers.” He look at me as if I had asked him to sleep with his wife, “No, why do you ask,” he answered. This was a problem that had haunted me for the past ten days in England, the lack of internet connection. Believe it or not I hadn’t found one shop, café, bar, restaurant or tourist organization with Wi-Fi for customers to use. I am not talking about free Wi-Fi, I am talking about any kind of Wi-Fi! I was staying in a digital black hole! And from the answer this waiter had just given me it seems that the internet connection in the capital was just as terrible.

When I got back to the normality, or in other words on the runway at Cilipi, 198 emails arrived in a tidal wave. The other thing that hit me in London this time around was fear. This was something new for me, I have never really felt this before, and I have to say I didn’t like it. In certain moments I found myself looking twice at people, thinking about situations and remembering scenes from news reports, I had been infected with a fear of terrorism. It was an odd feeling. As we walked along the main shopping streets, dived into busy underground trains, ate in busy restaurants or just drank coffee I found myself checking out passers-by. London is a true international city; in fact it is pretty difficult to hear an English voice anymore. The waiters are from Poland, the shop assistants from India, the taxi drivers from the Caribbean, bus drivers from Africa, chefs from Italy…only the police officers use English as a first language. I hated myself for doing it but I found myself double checking the Arabs, the Muslims, the North Africans, just to make sure that they weren’t part of a terrorist plot. Never have I done this before, and yes I realize it is exactly what the terrorists want, they want our fear, our fear is their victory. So I forced myself to forget, to join in with the crowds, I pushed any trepidation to the back of my mind and went about my business as I normally would. “I think you will find it a problem to get free Wi-Fi in a bar or café here,” replied the waiter, as I returned to life in a digital black hole. He wasn’t wrong.

So as we pushed our way through the tourist mass in the pouring rain, yes it rained all day in London, I couldn’t help but think to myself, if this is a sign of what 2017 will bring me then it will be “raining tourists” in Dubrovnik all year.    

Dubrovnik has a new tourist attraction, an ice-rink. But this is no artificial rink made for the Dubrovnik Winter Festival, no this slippery surface was made by the freezing temperatures in Dubrovnik today.

Outside of a popular shopping centre a large puddle of water froze in the minus temperatures and has formed a rather large ice-rink. Icicles have also formed on the facade of the building just to add to the festive spirit. Be careful if you were planning a shopping trip over the weekend.

ice dubrovnik 2017 2

ice dubrovnik 2017

The Voice of Dubrovnik

THE VOICE OF DUBROVNIK


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