As Millions of Croats Self-Isolate Responsibly, Split’s Sporting Picigin Tradition Continues

Total Croatia News

April 2, 2020 – Croatia has introduced some of the most restrictive measures on movement in the world to combat COVID-19, and with great success. But the Split game of ‘picigin’, it seems, is an exception. 

One of the most powerful (in a field of very powerful) articles I have read in the last few weeks about our new reality was A letter to the UK from Italy: this is what we know about your future in The Guardian. 

The harrowing details apart, the sentence that stays with me is this:

Being locked up in a house with a pretty garden or in an overcrowded housing project will not be the same.

It was a thought that occurred to me several weeks ago. And so when schools were closed for an initial two weeks (we all knew it would be months), we had a choice to make. Stay in our very nice rental home in a village near Varazdin, where we would slowly kill each other once restrictions, or come to our rental apartment and previous home in Jelsa on Hvar. 

From a mental health aspect, there was no question. The sun, the terrace, the nature win every time. And if things got really bad, as they might, we had the family field to feed us. 

We were responsible and kept away from everyone (and I am yet to have a conversation with anyone here in the flesh almost three weeks later). Self-isolation and work. I have never worked harder. 5am start, bed at midnight. A break for lunch and one precious hour when I leave the house for my own solitude and escape from the world. 

I think twice before posting on social media, because I am aware that gorgeous videos of sunset by the sea must be frustrating to watch. But I do post them because 1)  I want to support Croatian tourism by reminding people in isolation that this is what awaits, 2) giving people a happy reminder that their favourite places are waiting for them, and 3) because those who follow TCN will appreciate the hard work we do needs some stress relief. 

And Hvar is stunning right now, and the local tourism businesses will be very happy to welcome you after all this madness is over. 

Meanwhile today, in Split, reports Dalmacija Danas

The traditional Split game of Picigin was in full flow. If you are not familiar with picigin, it is a Split tradition with its very own World Championship, and the first beach game in the world to get cultural heritage status. You can learn more about picigin here

Dalmacija Danas is conducting a poll on whether or not this is responsible behaviour, with 79% initially disapproving. 

Your thoughts? Comments below or vote in the Dalmacija Danas questionnaire


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