Yesterday we woke up to a sunny morning, which got us in the mood for a bit of exploring. The forecast said that the rain, clouds and cold wind would start at about 3 pm (and so they did!), and we knew we had half a day at our disposal, preferably somewhere close. An hour later, a bottle of water, two cheesy puff pastry rolls and a bowl of strawberries in a tote bag, Johnny Cash and June Carter singing from the radio, we were driving in the direction of the abandoned medieval town of Dvigrad.
Till yesterday, we were always eyeing the ruins from the viaduct over Lim Valley, talking about how we have to visit one day, and how dreamy it looked from over there. I was expecting unapproachable tower, a couple of crumbling walls, and a lot of wildflowers waiting for me to photograph them. At first glance, it seemed that Dvigrad is going to be exactly that, until we started to walk among the ruins, following the marked route, and then the abandoned town started opening in front of us. All wrapped up in lush greenery, there were the sleepy cobbled streets, houses that were deserted a long time ago, steep towers and walls, a Romanesque church overlooking a vast open space of what was once main town square. My mind started evoking (or better yet, imagining) scenes of what was once life in this place: a hubbub of people, horses and carriages on a market day, a creak of the massive wooden gate closing before the battle, ringing of church bells before the mass or as a warning of raging fire... I couldn't stop wondering: Was there music inside those city walls? What drinks did they have in the local pub? What did they cook and would we like some of those recipes today? How did their language sound? What did they look like?
Historical records say that already in the middle of the 17th century there were only three families left there, the town was completely abandoned in the 18th century. Left to decay for three centuries, it being still there (although in ruins) is such a richness, both historical and aesthetic. The silence, the views of the vast green valley, the opportunity to walk those streets certainly got my mind wandering. And it turned out that the cloudy weather just intensified the experience- it made grey stone walls a bit greyer, lush greenery a bit greener and occasional pops of flowery color a bit brighter.
We had some time left before the rain, Lim Bay wasn't far away so we decided to revisit as the last time we visited was quite some time ago. Not much has changed- the color of the water was still dark green, there were fresh oysters available to buy straight from the mussel farm, a couple of restaurants from the socialist era were still having a decent number of guests. We walked the seafront, wondered at all the mussel shells at the shore and decided that we'll be back next time with a small rowboat and a bucket of ice for transporting the mussels to our kitchen table. Already feeling excited about summer day trips and summer feasts!
** Are there any dreamy locations next to a place where you live in? I'm curious to know!