Sunday, June 28, 2009

On Friday I went to Zagreb. It was kind of a last minute thing. We had rain on and off all the way there. It was not raining when I got there, but just as I walked to my friends car near the train station, it started. Very quickly there was a torrential downpour, it kind of reminded me of New York. When it finally stopped it was quite nice and a few of us went to a place in the city to eat cake.

On Saturday I ran to Jarun from where I am staying and there was a Triathlon about to happen, it was the Zagreb Open. I watched the swimming part and the first loop of the cycling, then ran back home.

I was supposed to run a 14k race this morning near Zagreb, but there was a problem with my ride. So I ran for 45 minutes in Jarun. Then I watched my friend swim in a 1500 meter race. Then Ice cream in the city before I caught my train back to Ljubljana.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Woke up to another rainy day, which it seems may continue for another 5 days. There are momentary pauses and a few seconds of sunshine.
Went to the bank here in Ljubljana and opened an account, which is quite easy now that I have a tax number. Then I went to work for a few hours. On the way home I pass by quite a few galleries and I noticed that there is a Robert Maplethorpe exhibit at the National Gallery, maybe if I get a chance I will go and check it out.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Well things are finally starting to move along. After a few false starts I have finally got a tax number here in Slovenia. This is required for me to open a bank account and such. It was a rainy day and did not seem too promising in the beginning, but as the day went on, things started to sort themselves out. In the afternoon I got a call from my potential coffee supplier and he is going to send me a sample to check out, which is great news. He is actually an Englishman I knew and lost contact with a few years ago and is now living in Colombia.
Despite the rain I got a nice run in this afternoon and I am now relaxing before having dinner and watching some U21 European Championship football. I watched England draw 1-1 with Germany last night and hope to watch Serbia play Sweden tonight.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

I ran for almost 1 hour this morning in Ljubljana and it was a mix of outskirts of the city and almost countryside.. I feel like I am running at a comfortable pace and my form feels good. I have a slight problem with an old back injury, but I can live with that. Where is your friendly neighbourhood Chiropractor when you need him. Anyway I will sort that out.

Yesterday I met with Zvonko and Zrdavko Jakovic, they are 2 guys who share my last name and live about 30 minutes drive from here. We had a nice chat over coffee and it seems that our history may go all the way back to a village in Bosnia, more to follow.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Over the last couple of winters I have run in Flushing Meadow Park and out to Shea Stadium and the new Citi field Stadium. I would take photo's of the progression of the new stadium and the end of the old stadium. Well one of my photo's of the new stadium has been selected to be included in the 7th and latest edition of the Schmap city guide. It can be see at the following link;,-74.0250

Pretty cool uh!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

On Friday I went to Croatia, to try and do the final paperwork for my farm. It was not as easy as I thought it would be. My cousin told me it would not be easy. There was a lot of going from one department to another and after 3 hours it seemed we were almost finished. I must mention that a friend from Zagreb came with me and acted as translator and explain-er. Then we found a problem and I was advised to talk to a local lawyer. The initial problem was to do with the plan of the land, it was not clear and it needed to be made clear, or there may be problems in the future. When it looked like that was sorted, the lawyer found a mistake in the contract which could cause it to be rejected by the county office. She said that and amendment could be drawn up that would correct this and I would have to come back today and sign it and have it notarized.This was done this morning and now it is being sent to my Aunt to sign and get notarized.
My lawyer will then submit all the papers and the county will tell me how much I have to pay them in taxes. All of this cost me around 400 Euro, which is more than I would have liked, but that's the bureaucratic system for you.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

For the last 2 weeks or so the skin on the bottom of my feet has been peeling of . This is normal for me after a multi day race. It is like the old skin of the race is changing into a new one.
On Monday I did my longest run for a few weeks and the next day was shorter, but then I started running longer each day and also running with more pace. I am feeling as though my form is good again, actually I thought my from was good on the Harmony run, but it's hard to tell when you are carrying a torch. Anyway I am happy with my running.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

My friend Milan asked me if I wanted to go play snooker, I have not played in quite a few years, but I said yes. When we got to the place, they only had pool tables, so we decided to play pool. It was quickly evident that I was out of practice, but as the morning went on I got a little better and actually won a game, though there is a question of if I did it fairly. Anyway we had a lot of fun. I hope we can find a place that has snooker.
I have now worked out about 4 running routes and I am enjoying running on the streets of Ljubljana.
I just want to mention my friend Amanda Stickel, who I met at the US 50k Nationals, where she was 3rd. Since then she has improved her 5k, 10k and half marathon times, so maybe the toughness of the 50k race made her stronger, when she eventually recovered.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

The tree known in the US and UK as Lyme or Tillia, is know as Lipa here in the former Yugoslavia. This month the month of June is when they are in flower and in fact in Croatia they call the month Lipanj after the tree that is flowering then. They also have a month called Listopad, which means falling leaves and that month is October. It all kind of makes sense does it not.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

I got a ride with 2 friends from Rijeka to Zagreb on Wednesday. I planned only to stay until Thursday afternoon, but ended up staying until this morning. I got to meet with some old friends and make some arrangements to go to Dubrave and Ogulin in the next few weeks, to take care of the final paperwork concerning the farm.
I am now back in Ljubljana, where the weather is quite nice and hope to enjoy the weekend.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

I forgot to mention that since my first experience with the raw food diet, I have not been drinking coffee except when I visit family in the former Yugoslavia. It is such a social thing here that it would be an insult not to accept a coffee from a member of my family. I do noticed though that when I drink coffee my digestive system seems to tighten up.
I bought a Slovenian sim card last week and a friend gave me an old phone, but it needed a new battery. Well I got one this morning in Rijeka and I think a lot cheaper than in Slovenia.
@ of my friends were supposed to be coming to Rijeka today and we were supposed to have lunch together, but it is 3 :30 in the afternoon and I have not heard from them and cannot seem to make contact. They said that I could get a ride from them to Zagreb today, but it looks like I will stay another night and take the bus tomorrow.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

I had breakfast with my aunt this morning and when I am in her apartment it always reminds me of 30 plus years ago when I first came to Rijeka.
In January I signed the pre contract for the farm and today we signed the full contract and got it notarized.
I have visited Rijeka quite a few times and it has become quite familiar to me.

Monday, June 01, 2009

I was in Germany over the weekend. Part work, part vacation, well sort of. It seems that I have found someone in Serbia who can make a coffee roasting machine for me, cheaper than the commercial ones and to my specs.
In a few hours I will take the train to Croatia where I will hopefully take care of some of the final details with my property.
So the last few days, my first real week in Slovenia have been quite fruitful. I am off to a pretty good start