The sea aqua-dark, a watercolour unknown to me; deep green yet blue, black on the underside and living bright all the while.
We sit beneath the spread of an olive tree 1700 years old, according to the locals (1500 according to the sign . . . must be a very old sign). It is a beautiful tree. We eat chocolate and play backgammon. The score today is 5-3, to Ben of course.
We have a made a bet that could go a long way to evening up the overall score . . . if Russia sold Alaska to the Americans Ben loses half his 10 point lead. If the Canadians sold Alaska then hell, I’ll take Ben up on his offer of calling it quits on the current round and starting the challenge again. (He, very generously, reckons that it’s only fair to give me time to find my game . . . personally I think I’m still looking.)
We roam along a magnificent waterfront. A drover’s dog could see why everyone who’s anyone sailing into this bay in the past 2000 years has wanted to nab it for himself.
We have lunch. We play backgammon. It’s 28-16 . . . time to Google Alaska.
I catch the bus to Split. Ben walks. From the bus station I find my way past a giant bronze statue of either a man of the Catholic god summoning the wrath of grapes or . . . a wizard!; round the city wall and into the old city through the palace!
The bloody palace! How fantastic is that!
Rooms and alleyways and arches yellow old and still standing. What a beautiful surprise. Through the palace and onto the waterfront, where Europe’s great ferries trundle in and out of the harbour and her people wander on the white polished stone esplanade beneath the shady palms.
I sit and wait for Ben. I watch the people. I watch the boats. I watch the sun set and the new moon grow brighter as the watercolours on the horizon fade to darkest blue. This is my favourite moon.
A fabulous time to start our journey proper – Split to Istanbul.
Our Journey GoogleMapsOur Videos on Youtube 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Longer Videos 1