Disclaimer 1: This light article is directed to our more loyal readers that need some distractions, with the weekend/holidays approaching. All the others are invited to go back and cut their teeth with our more serious pieces on EU energy security, animal welfare, how to save the world from Brussels and comitology (do we have one? otherwise I suggest we write one!).

Disclaimer 2: my blog-buddies had the great idea to devote the whole week to the new Member State of the EU, Croatia. Unluckily I found myself assigned the article to close the “Welcome Croatia” week and my colleagues have now already raised the bar too high for me. So I thought: what’s left?!

Regrettably they say you can’t make a whole article out of disclaimer. But you can make a droll one spending the lunch break looking for bizarre things on Croatia. That’s what I did, and here are the:

5 curiosities of Croatia I spotted surfing the net!

  1. Croatian CravatTHE TIE: Croatia can claim to have invented the tie, or cravat. The tie actually originates from a type of scarf worn by Croatian cavalrymen to distinguish them from other soldiers during the 30 year war which took place in Europe during the 17th Century. The French took to referring to this particular way of tying the scarf as “a la cravate,” meaning “in the Croatian way”. I bet Napoleon tried to bring it to Louvre and sell it as French invention anyway…
  2. AN EASY LANGUAGE: Croatia is said to be a ‘speak as you spell’ language which makes life definitely easier. Knowing this you probably won’t have difficulties with the pronunciation of such basic words like prtljaznik (luggage rack), vrh (peak), nestrpljivo (impatiently) or Trst (Trieste)?
  3. BONDS WITH THE US: The Republic of Dubrovnik in Croatia was the first state to recognize the independence of the United States of America. Another reason why US should be grateful to the 28th EU cousin is that the White House in Washington was built with the stone from the island of Brac.
  4. EGG-ART:  for the stucco of the Veli Rat lighthouse on the island of Dugi otok (Long island) the Croats opted for 100 000 egg yolks!
  5. THE SQUID: http://www.rtl.hr/vijesti/novosti/5553/u-cavtatu-uhvacena-divovska-lignja/

Personally I have never been to Croatia, although it’s next to my home country Italy, and is well-known for its fantastic nature and coastline. But this lunch break research further convinced me to visit the country as soon as possible. Didn’t this work for you? If it’s a matter of laziness, don’t worry, they know how to cope with it, with things such as the Uspinjača Funicular, only 66 meters long to avoid a 2 minute walk. Not enough? Than you should probably consider going for one of the amazing festivals. If the music festivals are boring to you, why not trying a straw sculptures festival or the goat beauty contest if you prefer!

AGAIN: Dobrodošli Hrvatska!