Dobro jutro iz Hrvatske! That means good morning from Croatia! Yes, it’s been a bit quiet on the Naturally Nicole forefront lately because my family took a giant leap across the world, to see my Husband’s family in Zadar, Croatia. It has been a wild ride so far, but it’s been an amazing experience.
Croatia has been noted as one of Europe’s most fashionable places to visit. Whether you are a backpacker, a touring family, long-distance cyclist, yachter or a spa-hotel surfer, I guarantee you will find the beauty and allure in Croatia.
This was by far my biggest fear. Traveling across the world with two small children. Someone pass me the vodka! Well, it was both better and worse than I thought it would be. When we arrived at the airport, our travel agency had made an error with the formatting of our infant’s ticket. Somehow, she was booked separately and wasn’t attached to the rest of the family for boarding. I didn’t really understand the details, all I understood was that it was a problem and it was taking a VERY long time to fix. This was right when we walked into the airport.
This was supposed to be the quick part, just getting our tickets and giving them all our checked baggage. We were waiting and waiting and waiting. 45 minutes passed by and I have one employee staring at a computer like a deer in headlights with no customer service skills, one crying infant and one whining toddler asking me if he could see inside his “luggage”. I was trying to keep my cool, but the overwhelming nature of it all wound up inside and came blasting out. The vibe of this long journey was setting in all wrong. The tears began to roll.
About another half hour later, the employees finally figured out the ticket situation and we were able to go through the security station. This was a relatively simple process, luckily. The security standards have changed a lot since I last traveled. We didn’t have to take our shoes and socks off or remove our belts, watches, cell phones, etc.
We boarded our first flight a little after 6:00pm and prepared for an 8 hour stretch. We reserved the first row with a bassinet that hooks up to the wall, so we had much more space than I anticipated. My 9-month-old took awhile to settle down and we were “those people” with the loud, crying child for awhile. There were quite a lot of babies on the flight though, so every family had their “moment to shine” if you know what I mean, haha.
The Un-Wanted Flight Guest
Once we finally settled in and I got a chance to finally exhale, I see something out of the corner of my eye….
I look down at the diaper bag and there is a massive cockroach crawling on top! I think I would’ve handled a five-alarm fire better than seeing this creepy crawler. I jumped out of my seat with my infant in my arms and jumped around like there were hot coals burning my feet. I leaped out of our row and darted into the kitchen of the plane!
Of course it was almost dinner time so all of the flight attendants are trying to prepare dinner for 360 passengers around a crying mother and baby. We flagged over an attendant and they were calling for backup. It was a little bit of hysteria. They assured me this rarely ever happens and the plane was brand new (not even a month old). Honestly, I wasn’t listening to anything else. I just wanted that bug OUT or I wasn’t going back in that seat.
They finally managed to catch it and dispose of it. Then they came over and showered us with gifts from First Class.
As long as it was over and that bug was gone, maybe I could get some shut eye.
We all didn’t get much sleep, but the flight didn’t drag on very long at all. We actually arrived in Germany in 6 1/2 hours instead of the anticipated 8.
The Frankfurt, Germany airport is massive and it took us almost 2 hours to travel for our plane to our next gate! We were exhausted at this point, but didn’t have long to wait until our final flight to Zadar, Croatia.
The next flight was a breeze and lasted less than 2 hours. It felt like just as we got in the air, we were landing.
Once we arrived, we were met with warm sun and smiling faces. We greeted my husband’s family and started our short drive to the house. This was my first time out of the country, so I was really taking in
Very narrow roads, small cars, funny signs and and stop lights.
We were definitely not in Kansas anymore, Toto!
The scenery in Croatia is simply picture perfect. Lush landscape, entrancing blue-green seas and charming homes all adorned with terra-cotta roofs, accompanied by donkeys and sheep.
A native explained Croatia perfectly.
” …it’s like the air is just different here. It just awakens your spirit”
It certainly does. And as I sit here, typing to all of you, overlooking this amazing country, I continue to dream about doing this for a living. This right here. Sharing this journey, and every journey, with you. Sharing my experiences, my knowledge, even my downfalls. From far away or very near, I have a dream that I will someday be able to work from the highest mountains or the lowest valleys, and be able to offer something for everyone along the way.
As you’re reading this post, I’d just Iike to thank you. I thank you for supporting my blogging efforts. I thank you for returning for a visit every once in awhile, engaging with my blog and sharing it with others. Without you, this blog is merely a diary. With you, it becomes a story. A story for everyone to experience. So again, I thank you greatly for stopping by.
Most of our photos are on our camera and I will certainly post them when we get home but here are a few snapshots from my phone so you can get a taste of this beautiful land.
There is nowhere I have been that compares to the beauty and unique vibe of Croatia.
Have you ever been to Croatia? What was your favorite part??
Thanks for letting me into your world awhile,