Photos of the Day

Tuesday, May 10th, 2011

So according to my guidebook on Croatia, this month marks the start of the migration season for deutschis touristus. Over the next few weeks, scores of Germans—traveling in groups ranging from two to well over a dozen or more—will wander hundreds of miles to the Croatian coast, where they will gorge on the abundant shellfish, sun their ingurgitated bellies on the rocky shore, and—if they aren’t too sluggish from the sun and shellfish—to awkwardly mate. It’s a fascinating and wondrous phenomenon to observe, especially this closely. Interesting tidbit: Most of the time, you can tell the males from the females by the bushy tufts of hair on their faces. (But not always!)*

Today I walked around Plitvice Lakes National Park, a land of gorgeous turquoise water and terrifying waterfalls that you can damned near walk over. I then accidentally got lost in the countryside, after which a kindly Croatian sheep farmer gave me a ride back to my room. I offered to pay him. He jovially replied, “No, no. Happens all the time.” He said this with a your silly, lost, desperate American tourist face was payment enough twinkle in his eye. So it was a mutual exchange of services. (Awesome technology addendum: In the Internet and cell phone age, you can actually Tweet to the world that you’re currently lost in the Croatian countryside. Note, though, that while definitely awesome, this does very little to actually help you not be lost anymore.)

According to my guidebook (for real this time), this part of Croatia also is where most of Europe shoots its American-style spaghetti westerns. So some town and street names, weirdly, are Croaitan-ized versions of well-known American Indian words, tribes, and chiefs.

Photos of the falls in the next couple days. In the meantime, here are a few more shots from Ravinj, which I think is my new favorite town on the planet.

(*Note: I’m going to claim that my part-German heritage gives me license to make ethnic-ish jokes about German tourists.)

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11 Responses to “Photos of the Day”

  1. #1 |  Justthisguy | 

    I have read that Dr. Hans Asperger served in Croatia after we bombed his clinic and he was called up for the Wehrmacht. This should be of interest to some libertarians.

    I would pay good money, if I had any, for a rifle or pistol provably carried by him. I imagine yelling at a housebreaker, “Eat Aspie lead, neurotypical scum!”

  2. #2 |  James J.B. | 

    2 things:
    1. It is almost like they had an intervention for balko. From swat raids and rage posts to those of butterflies and buildings.
    2. You just know when he comes back, it’s on, baby!!!!

    Travel safe rb.

  3. #3 |  goober1223 | 

    Regarding your technology addendum, that is a fascinating trend to ponder. In all of history it has been easier to communicate to those close to you than those farther away. Now it has become easier to tell the whole world (whoever is listening anyway) a single thought via twitter than to talk directly to a person in the next room (“Whaaaaat? I can’t hear you!”). To use engineering terms, I would think of the past as a low-pass filter and the current state a high-pass filter.

  4. #4 |  ClubMedSux | 

    I’m going to claim that my part-German heritage gives me license to make ethnic-ish jokes about German tourists.

    Fair enough. In about two weeks there will be plenty of Germans making fun of this American tourist, and my part-German heritage will be of little significance to them.

  5. #5 |  B | 

    The German tourist tends to mark his/her territory by placing beach towels over lounge chairs, often rising in the hours before dawn to do so. You may never actually see the tourist in question, only the evidence of its territorial marking.

  6. #6 |  Bee | 

    Croatia looks absolutely awesome. I am all hot to go, now. Radley, you’re a great travel photographer and raconteur.

  7. #7 |  lunchstealer | 

    (*Note: I’m going to claim that my part-German heritage gives me license to make ethnic-ish jokes about German tourists.)

  8. #8 |  lunchstealer | 

    Argh, post fail.

    (*Note: I’m going to claim that my part-German heritage gives me license to make ethnic-ish jokes about German tourists.)

    I’d argue that your membership in the human race gives you license to make fun of German tourists.

    And French, English, American, and Canadian tourists.

  9. #9 |  Bronwyn | 

    One of these days, Radley, I’m going to stow away in your baggage and make you take me with you on vacation.

  10. #10 |  Justthisguy | 

    Heh! to # 8. I grew up in, and have spent a large part of my life in, Flarduh. Let me tell you, the German tourists are nicest ones around here. I know the difference between good tourists and bad tourists. Good tourists are polite, spend lots of money while harmlessly amusing them selves, then go home. Bad tourists are just the opposite, of course.

  11. #11 |  DPirate | 

    “my part-German heritage”

    Wow. Good guidebook!