2010 10 09

Today we went on a tour of Crikvenica, Opatia, and an eco village where Ljljana, the principal at Ucenicki Dom, lives. In Crikvenica we walked along a beach where I collected shells and rocks, we visited a cave and motorcycle museum, walked on a green boardwalk along the beach where there were beautiful views of the water, went to a library where we were greeted with juice and dried figs, and visited a villa where we picked and ate pomegranates.

We were then picked up by our tour shuttle and were driven to Opatia where we roamed about and eventually got a chance to swim in the Adriatic. It was a sunny but windy day, so the waves were pretty violent. The floor of the swimming platform was a rough concrete that was covered in slimy algae. The combination of the two surface textures mixed with excitement and clumsiness caused a couple of us to fall. Not badly of course. I scraped my foot and swallowed a couple of mouthfuls of salty Adriatic water and then we were on our way to the ecovillage.

The drive to the ecovillage was long. Set in the middle of the Croatian countryside was a small grouping of houses built from gifts, found materials, and love. People from around the world go there during different parts of the year to sleep and work on the structures and the farm. Large groups of people also come for cultural events and festivities. The sleeping structures were made of strawbale and mud, old abandoned windows, glass bottles, and wood. There were solar panels that provided some electricity and fire places for heat. The bathroom is the great outdoors and human waste is allowed to become a part of nature again. There was a stone labyrinth and sticks laid as armatures for sweatlodges in the field. There were sheep, dogs, and cats running around everywhere. The pace of living there is completely different than city life, although I think similar to other ecovillage type areas. There is a completely different lifestyle there that gave us a little more insight into our client Ljljiana’s taste and personality for the design build.

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