The heat is on

My expat life in Istria

With soaring temperatures in Istria, it’s hard work in the garden and at the typeface. Live Istria’s launch date, 29th August, is just around the corner. With so much on – and technology conspiring against me, will I make it?

Monday, 22 August

Only a week to design and build a site, and do a final edit – very unlikely, especially in this heat. (In case you hadn’t picked up on it, it’s hot, the hottest end of August anyone can remember. Great for holidays, not as much for work.)

Nicky-weeds-water-feature-1Looked at the water feature last week – it’s getting really overgrown and manky. I asked P to clean it, but guilt took over and I decided I ought to do it – it’s my garden afterall. It’s horrible, paddling in the murky water, not sure what you’re going to put your feet on or what’s going to climb up your legs. On the up side, the water was nice and cool!


Met Karlo’s permit guru, who says he can help us (and John). Unfortunately, he doesn’t come cheap. But first, we have to get rid of our current, useless architect. In the end, we drafted a letter, Rick translated it and John delivered it, by hand and by registered post – team-work!

Also asked Mr. Guru about the Zbandaj house. Bad news. In summary: Zbandaj isn’t a designated commercial zone, so the house can’t get the commercial building permit it needs to also get a tourist classification, which is essential. So no good to us, although we’ll wait to see what Azra’s architect says before abandoning the idea totally. This situation is driving everyone mad, not just foreigners but Croatian businesses as well. It’s a crazy law, that’s stifling part of the country’s main industry – tourism.

So no progress on Live Istria on Monday, in the week before it is planned to launch!!! 🙁


Tuesday, 23 August

Tough gardening session this morning. Digging couch grass from round the lavender in full sun. It’s tough to get out and it always comes back. Even clearing only a small bed took well over an hour and just as I was thinking of taking a quiet break, the gardeners turned up to cut the lawn. With the massed band of mowers and strimmers, there wouldn’t be much peace so I pushed on, trimming the pool pergola – another hour! Really needed my shower and coffee after that. 

I went to carry on with Live Istria and hit one of those ‘how did I miss that’ moments. We bought the domain some time ago, but never got around to getting it hosted. So I don’t have anywhere to build the site! P got on it straight away, but – he says – it can take some time for the domain to resolve/propagate, or something like that. Not a clue what he means but the result is still no design work today and the clock ticks down.

Out for dinner with RnS and JnJ this evening. Went to Flengi (village famous for its pig-on-a-spit restaurants) and I’ve never seen it so busy. Luckily Rick seems to know everyone, and a table miraculously appeared. He’s a useful man to know. Finished the evening star-gazing back at JnJ’s. Saw a bright dot go overhead, which John’s phone app assured us was the space station, and best of all, a shooting star – wonderful! How come we never do this at home?


Wednesday, 24 August

A-tomato-cropWorking in garden by 8 am. Hot work, would you believe. Bashed on with the weeding, then picked huge quantity of tomatoes. As a surprise for P, and to my own surprise as well, I turned them into a tomato sauce. Rather a novelty working at the cooker again. 

Got to my computer only to find a note from P – he’d hit a strange server problem when installing WordPress on (he tends to do this stuff at night while I’m in the land of nod). Aagghh!! 🙁

So … I couldn’t get any further with Live Istria. Instead I sorted out some admin for our rental business, went for a swim, attacked a huge ironing pile, and then swam another ½ km. Achieved at least something with the day.

P’s been wrestling with the server problem. Thinks it’s solved, but we won’t know until tomorrow. So we both flopped by the pool in the early evening. The sun had almost set before it was cool enough for P to get in the kitchen to make dinner.


Thursday, 25 August

It’s so hot at the moment, I couldn’t face another battle in the garden, so I went to my desk instead. Success! Another note from P, saying WordPress finally installed and working! Set to with a vengeance and, apart from a swim before lunch, that was my day! 

P&N-relax-in-pool-4P forced me to knock off at around 6 pm and flop by the pool. As he says, the heat makes it hard to work, but it keeps the pool over 30°C pool.  I keep reminding myself there’s more to life than Live Istria – relaxing by/in the pool’s good for the soul.


Friday, 26 August

Garden still on hold as I finally started uploading content  and, by the end of the day, had a lot of it done. Amazing! Glorija here and called the chimney sweep for me. They said they’d come either Tuesday or Wednesday next week and would call before they came. This being Croatia, that means they’ll probably come unannounced next Friday.

Another great evening swim & relax, with an added dash of relief.


Saturday, 27 August

Even with the fan full on, it’s now too hot to sleep (nearly 29°C on the terrace at 6 am), so up early and at the typeface by 6:45.  Result? I was totally shattered by 1 pm, after about six hours without a break. But a fantastically productive morning. 

tally-John1RnS and JnJ coming for dinner this evening. I wanted to be at least partially awake, so had lie down after lunch, to try and get some sleep. No success, but it was nice to have a break with my book. While I ‘snoozed’ P got everything ready, including one of my favourite dinners: pasta puttenesca.

After blue-blue skies and scorching heat all week, the weather forecast said rain for 5 pm, just as everyone was due to arrive. Typical! In fact, it blew through (rain would have been nice for the garden), but it was cooler, cloudy and windy. So instead of flopping by the pool, we played Mexican Trains (a silly domino game) instead 🙂 Great fun evening.  


Sunday, 28 August

Cooler weather at last (‘only’ 23°C at 6 am). Beginning to get used to being up and around by 6. At the start of the summer I was getting up at 8:30 am and it’s been gradually getting earlier and earlier.   

Rescued a large scorpion out of the kitchen sink this morning. Don’t know who was more scared, it or me.

BBQ-pixieSunday’s meant to be a lazy day, but as I’m up a long time before P, I sneaked a work session in before he was around.

In the end, I didn’t make my self-imposed launch date, but I’m a lot closer than I thought I’d be at the start of the week.

We rounded off the week with a BBQ for just us two and an afternoon in and by the pool. Wonderful! I love living in Istria 🙂


Will I make my deadline?  – find out next week.

Read my blog in the right order – from the start in July


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One Response to The heat is on

  1. diablo 3 on 16/09/2011 at 13:14

    Your design is so special when compared with several others. Thanks for publishing whenever you possess the possibility. Guess I’ll bookmark this site.

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