Posted on October 24, 2016
Much like the Neapolitan fisherman cast in stone on the shores of Maksimir lake in Zagreb, I went through this October empty-handed and melancholic.
Some times of the year seasonal changes are more pronounced than in others. Head over to Cardinal Guzman’s monthly photo challenge to see how versatile they can be.
Posted on August 22, 2016
From a pleasant warmth, to a scorching heat, it is finally starting to chill my feet.
That’s what the month of Leo has been like for me.
This is my entry for Cardinal Guzman’s inspiring monthly photo challenge Changing Seasons.
Posted on March 22, 2016
March, the third month of the year, was named after Mars, the Roman God of war, but also a guardian of agriculture and the ancestor of Roman people being the father of Romulus and Remus.
That’s what the Western European tradition says, but in Slavic which is the tradition of my ancestors the story is a bit different, or is it?
When I was little I had to memorise two names for each month of the year. At the time I did not understand why. I had no problems with extra words, but I could not figure out why months had two official names each. One was Croatian, and the other was a latinised form that was the preferred form used in formal documents in Yugoslavia.
Now, let me go back to the month in question.
Not until recently did I find out the meaning of the Croatian name for March. It is ožujak and if you ask anybody who is not etymologically aware what that word really means in Croatian, they would go blank.
My research showed that what we now call “ožujak” which is an entirely obscure word in my language, used to be “lažujak” from “laž” meaning “lie” which indicates the deceiving, fickle quality of the month that tricks plant-life into sprouting too soon as suggested also in old Polish name for the month („łżykwiat“, „łżekwiat“ and „łudzikwiat“).
If you think that this reference to March is off-putting and somewhat unfair, let me tell you what Serbs used to call it. In their old calendar the name for March was “derikoža” which means skinner or skinning, implying that March, the month when winter meets spring, is the time when grim reaper harvests most souls, but also the time for skinning animals, or so the Serbian tradition claims. The same word is still in use in Serbian language to denote skinner or shark.
Even though I never thought highly of March, I was surprised to see so many references to death related to it. Do you recall the Ides of March from Shakespeare’s Julius Cesar – ‘Beware the Ides of March’ is the soothsayer’s message to Julius Caesar, warning Caesar of his death – (Cesar was indeed killed on the Ides i.e. 15th of March in 44 B.C.)
I will not show March as the month that claims lives either human or animal, instead I’ll focus on its fickle nature, its deceiving weather that should not be taken lightly.
“Beware of the sunshine of March” I used to be told when I was a kid living on the coast in the far south of Croatia.
Back then I did not understand why; now I do.
This is my entry for Cardinal’s Changing Seasons challenge.
Posted on February 29, 2016
For many, February is a brutal month, with winter at its worse, flu season at peak, and the sky looking as if it will never get blue again, but it is also when the Chinese celebrate the New Year, and this year they decided to do it in Zagreb.
Festively dressed Qin Shi Huang warriors (already wrapped for the trip back home) defending the main square in Zagreb
(please click on the photo to see the full size image)
In his monthly photo challenge Cardinal Guzman allows two options and one of them allows posting of a single photo representative of the month you are posting in, so here it is my take on February 2016.
Posted on January 30, 2016
Being the first month of the year, January can’t be all that bad; after all the year is still young and promising no matter how strange the results of parliamentarian elections turned out to be, or how deranged the bosses in my company became trying to hold on to their jobs. This month has dealt me some crazy cards and after throwing madly the first deck into a wall causing almost a terrible smash I did what had to be done…. I finished my part of the job before anyone else on the team and before the deadline which is not surprising knowing that I had to put my blog on hold for two weeks to be able to endure a daily (weekends included) 12 hour work schedule with a sore arm.
This month I sold the one-off rights for the use of one of my photographs. I never meant to sell any of my photographic works, but how could have I refused a luxury international clothing brand that offered a generous and flattering amount to be able to print my photo in 100 copies as invites for an exclusive fashion show in London. This has finally made me change the copyright notice on my blog in which I used to allow people to share freely the contents I publish here. This will no longer be possible without discussing licensing.
This month has also given me a better vision and I think I can finally see some people for who they really are: this goes for (some of) my family, (a few) co-workers, but certain bloggers too. It was about time I stopped giving
some people too much (or too little) credit. The most valuable lessons in life are painful and January has been very educational in that respect.
From the New Year’s celebration through some rough times, dealing with health issues and an impossible workload I still managed to live to see the end of the month still not crippled from all the translating and running to meetings, and now I am away in another country celebrating my birthday weekend.
This may very well be the longest piece of read from me for a while; you know that I usually confine myself to a single photo and paragraph, but it is my birthday and you are supposed to humour me 😉
Celebrate every victory you have fought for and pat yourself on the back even if everyone else fails to do it.
– my quote
This is my entry for Cardinal Guzman’s clever new challenge the details of which you can find here.
Only this once your comments are not subject to moderation, so go on and write to your heart’s desire and I will read you on Monday.
P.S. NEVER TO BE FORGOTTEN:
One of the saddest news this month was the passing of David Bowie. More than any of the greats that I listened to, Bowie seemed out of this world. Wherever he might have come from, I hope he is now where he truly belongs. May God’s love be with you, Duke!