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Saturday, October 24, 2009

Split by Margot Justes












There are many pluses to cruising; it is a great way to visit many places, see many things, there is no checking in and out of hotels and the luggage stays put. You spend a few hours in the port you happen to be visiting, get a feel for the local pulse, see as much as you can, go back to the ship and you’re ready for the next adventure.

Sort of like the movie ‘If this is Tuesday it must be Belgium’ except there you had something like seven cities in seven days and you had the luggage sightseeing with you.

With the visit to Split, Croatia, there was a drawback to cruising-I wanted to stay longer as in a few days not a few hours. Split is enchanting, beautiful, ancient yet modern and the two co-exist beautifully. It is the only city that I have ever visited with a living museum.

Why call it a living museum? Because it is a Roman Palace dating back to 305 AD designated a World Heritage Site in 1979 and it is still being used today by merchants, shop keepers and residents in apartment buildings and let’s not forget the many tourist that visit. All within the walls of the palace.

Split not only has a magnificent ancient building but also striking contemporary architecture. It is a stylish, delightful, vibrant city. A leisurely stroll on the gorgeous wide avenue bordering the Adriatic Sea is a must. They haven’t gone the Euro way-Croatia has its own currency the Kuna and seemed like a thriving industrious town, very aware of the tourist trade and the impact on its economy.

One interesting thing I found out from our tour guide-the cravat-otherwise know as a tie, originated in Croatia not Italy or France.

Croatia was never on my list of must see places but it is now. I will go back to Split, but will include Dubrovnik and Pula as well. If I hadn’t gone on the cruise, I would never have seen Split. Cruising is a wonderful way to ‘discover’ the world one wonder at a time and you can decide if a specific place is worth a more thorough visit.

More about Roman Emperor Diocletian and his palace in the next blog.

Till next time,
Margot Justes
http://margotsmuse.blogspot.com
http://www.mjustes.com/
A Hotel in Paris ISBN 978-1-59080-534-3






Saturday, October 17, 2009

Friends by Margot Justes

I might have mentioned that my daughter did a presentation for Sisters in Crime October 3rd. She did a fantastic job, discussing CBRNE, and if you want to know what CBRNE is all about, the entire presentation will be posted on my website (hopefully in a couple of days). Scientists speak in Acronym, I may be generalizing here, but I don’t think so.

At any rate, we had a couple of friends show up to support Dina; they have watched her grow up and are more family than anything else, but most assuredly great friends. We go back decades.

During her speech, I did learn a few things, among them; I don’t really want to know what Dina is doing. It is frightening. But I also realized how important friendships are, and as I get older, I am prioritizing the world around me and the things I want to do before my body tells me ‘stop, you’re done’. The change has been on-going, in fact since I started writing, but really came full force that Saturday.

Our great friend George took us out to lunch and it was delightful; so delightful in fact that we stayed at the restaurant for almost four hours. We caught up on events in our lives, we discussed our travels, and George pays attention to absolutely everything, sees everything he can and learns as much as he can about the places he’s visiting. I consider him the ultimate traveler, and no matter what age, he continues to learn.

I decided to simplify my life, I no longer buy ‘stuff’ just to have it, there has to be a purpose and it better be a good one. I still buy the occasional piece of art, and I admit the walls are cluttered, but I don’t change my art; the first piece I bought decades ago is hanging in the living room and I still love looking at it. Finally after all these years, I own an Earle serigraph (he deserves a one name moniker) I want another, his work is amazing and I love it.

But, I realized that weekend what is important and what I want to do for the rest of my able life. I really want to travel, learn about others, how they live, what they value and why, I want to spend time with family and friends, help where I can. Simplicity is good, recognizing and valuing great friends is terrific.

Till next time,
Margot Justes
http://margotsmuse.blogspot.com
www.mjustes.com
A Hotel in Paris ISBN 978-1-59080-534-3
Art brought her to Paris, then a stranger’s death changes her life.
available on amazon.com

Saturday, October 10, 2009

And So It Goes by Margot Justes

Does anyone feel like they are continuously behind schedule and there is never enough time to finish everything… this week between work and my personal life, I had a melt down by the time I got home after seven yesterday. My typical weekday starts at 5am, my friend Lillian and I have our 2.67 mile walk, (every fraction counts) then I get ready for work, the job that actually pays the bills; this is by way of an explanation.

I had an appointment to get my hair cut on Wednesday, wrote it down for Thursday, showed up and surprisingly my hair stylist wasn’t there, she was downtown having fun and there I was, expecting to get my hair cut. The nerve.

I apologized profusely, and she was kind enough to squeeze me in Friday, I did show up and on time.

The fridge seemed to be saying feed me, feed me, so I went food shopping; it was getting sparse in there, you can only drink so much old orange juice. By the time I got home I was not a happy camper, it was late, I was hungry and just plain tired.

The computer waited to be turned on. I swear everything seems to be developing a willful personality around me, at any rate, the guilt was there, but not the initiative, nothing got done, I sat in front of the TV, watched Numbers, and promptly dozed off.

Today seems to be going well; I’m productive and even made a pot of barley mushroom soup, wrote this blog and I feel sooo much better now, till next time, and there will be a next time, hopefully not so pronounced.

In the meantime, I asked my web gal if she could add a couple of pages to my website, so that pictures of Bath and Venice could be posted, she said yes, so another project got added on top on everything else, and so it goes…but I promise, I’m working on my stuff from Venice and the Greek Islands.

Till next time,
Margot Justes
http://margotsmuse.blogspot.com
www.mjustes.com
A Hotel in Paris ISBN 978-1-59080-534-3
Art brought her to Paris, then a stranger’s death changes her life.
available on amazon.com