Isolation is a relative term.

My favourite line as a couple of close friends have pointed out to explain why I moved out to this backward bureaucratic Balkan zone is that when I look out of my bedroom window I can see no other buildings. That is a significant difference to the view from my  19th floor Hackney flat.

Sunni prepare the ground in the vegetable garden for seedlings yet to grow. She spent several hours out there today hoeing and weeding.

Today Sunni and I where out working in the garden but rarely came within 10 meters of each other.

These mega scissors came from the Kaufland superstore in Karlovac but have proved remarkably effective in tackling the branches that I cut down from the large pear tree. Here I am taking off the twigs and cutting the small branches in to wood stove size pieces.

Sunni and Marko have been industriously working on the lower vegetable garden and at the moment it looks seriously organised. I have started planting seeds in some of my vegetable bays or “graves” as Stonky calls them. The first full bay has garlic, onions and carrots. A second smaller bay has courgettes planted along the top of its ridge.

My first full veg bay stuffed with carrot seeds, onions and garlic. The garlic has already started to sprout.
These fancy carrot seeds come in easy to plant paper tissue strips. Shame then that both packets said 4 pieces inside and both only had 3!!!

Yesterday we threw caution or Covid-19 to the wind and went in to Karlovac to see if my court case was would go ahead. No such luck all courts are closed. We did a little shopping hoping to buy some seedlings from the food market but we proved a little too early for them. From there we went to the Dacia car dealer garage to see if they could stop our breaks making a funny noise. The young guy there I spoke to when I took the car in a few weeks ago with the same issue (when of course the breaks failed to make the slightest hint of any unwanted sound) came straight up to me and shook my hand before I had time to think ‘elbow bump”!!  Oh well. An hour and 680 kuna (80 quid) later our front breaks shoes had all been replaced and the grating noise was gone. To celebrate we took the car to the car wash next to the garage.

This DIY 25 hour car wash on the edge of Karlovac has space for just three cars at a time. Some have space for 10 or more!

Croatians are as car mad as anyone else but when it comes to car cleaning there is a significant difference tween the UK and the Balkans. In London and I presume most UK cities going to get your car cleaned is in part about the spurious joy of driving through a car wash whilst feeling superior to the underpaid precarious car wash workers poisoning themselves with cleaning chemicals as they rub away at your muddy wheel caps. In Croatia and other Balkan countries I have only seen DIY car washes, where for a few quid you get a powerful water jet that has soap added and then clean water and a there’s a vacuum option for the insides too.

DIY punk with big water pistol fights the dust, grime and dead bugs that decorate our car.

Anyway I let Marko play with big water pistol whilst Sunni went back to her latest book and pretty soon the car was a gleaming white again.. hooraay!

The car roof is not left out.

And before I sign off an apology for being a bit slack with the blog of late. No I’m not down with Corona virus. I’ve been spending a lot of time of late at my computers doing layout and maths i relation to a new Active Publishing print run. I’ve also been seriously distracted by my new love Sanja in Belgrade, Serbia. She is now stuck there under a curfew and with the Schengen border closed for the foreseeable we are using FaceTime to keep in contact, a lot. The rest of you, reliant on my blog will just have to wait, ok?

This the the homemade mushroom, potato and spinach burek that Sanja in Belgrade made for me. Not at all greasy like the bakery bought ones and with that all important special ingredient… love! Ha ha 🙂

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