Sunday on the island of Korcula. There are 1195 separate islands belonging to the country of Croatia in the eastern Adriatic Sea; Korcula (pronounced KOR choo lah) is one of the largest: 33 kilometers (about 26 miles) long by 8 kilometers (5 miles) at its widest point.
Once again, this is an ancient part of the world. Archeologists have recently discovered the bones of a fish that dates back one billion years! The oldest human remains, a man and a woman, are ten thousand years old - geez, that’s a long time ago!
The Greeks arrived here about 500 BC - there is much evidence of their advanced civilization in several museums around the walled Old Korcula Town. The island has been inhabited continually since that time. Like so much of the Adriatic région there is Greek, Roman, Venetian, Ottoman dynasties represented in the architecture and culture.
This morning I attended Mass at one of the many Roman Catholic Churches here in Korcula, a neat experience, although I didn’t understand a word, save for « Amen. »
The currency in Croatia is the KUNA, its exchange rate is approximately 6.5 to one dollar. The currency in Montenegro, where we visited for two days before this stop, is the Euro, even though Montenegro is not a member of the European Union. It seems that when Yugoslavia was breaking up, leading to the war years of 1991-1995, theMontenegro-inflation rate became so exorbitant that they decided to adopt the German Deutsche Mark as a much more stable currency system. All went well until Germany (Deutschland) became a part of the European Union. So, Montenegro is the only non-Union country that uses the Euro. In our travels we’re changing currencies almost daily!
I don’t normally exchange US dollars for much of the local currency, as I find it more convenient, and less expensive, to make most purchases with my trusty Visa card. However, several days ago, I did hit an ATM, thinking I’d get a small amount of Kuna. I was so busy chatting with some of my fellow travels as I was accessing the machine, I mistook 5,200 Kuna for 520 Kuna on the ATM screen. After I’d taken my cash from the machine I realized that I’d withdrawn the equivalent of $800!!!!! I’m definitely hoping I won’t spend it all!!!