A quiet morning in a stranger’s living room was not exactly what I expected when we hopped off the ferry at the island of Hvar and saw the docks full of yachts too expensive even to look at, but at that moment it was exactly what we needed. The Sea Organ in Zadar uses wind and waves to create soothing sounds similar to what you might hear when you blow over the top of an empty bottle. The chords play randomly, not to any particular melody, and mirror the waves visitors can feel splashing their feet as they dangle them over the sea. I had traveled abroad before but always with the insulation of organization by family members or teachers. My friend Sammi and I had largely planned this trip in my apartment complex’s parking lot after she told me she was contemplating a trip to Croatia to see the scenery made famous by “Game of Thrones.” Without thinking, I blurted out that I wanted to join her.
Although this was not my first trip abroad, this time around I sat alone on my trans-Atlantic flight to meet up with my best friend from college once I reached eastern Europe. Thrilling, yes, but also nerve-wracking.
So when we were sipping very strong espresso on a ferry cruising to Hvar and Sammi abruptly looked up from her computer and said, “OK, don’t panic,” I immediately began doing just that. The Island of Lokrum is visible from the city walls of Old City Dubrovnik. The Island is home to colorful peacocks, a Benedictine monastery and the iron throne from the popular HBO TV series “Game of Thrones.” “I think I booked our hostel for the wrong night,” she finished, shooting me a nervous “you’re not going to freak out, are you?” look.
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