Easter in Dalmatia…Sretan Uskrs…chag Pesach kasher vesame’ach.

Spring is upon us, the season of rebirth, renewal and rejuvenation.  The sun is shining and buds have begun to appear on the trees as the flowers blossom.  The air is perfumed with the sweet fragrance of the hyacinths growing profusely in our neighbor’s yards.  The Stradun is bursting with locals strolling and greeting friends as they pause for a leisurely coffee at the outdoor cafes which have opened again after the extensive winter hibernation. 

Stradun cafe culture

Stradun cafe culture

Easter Sunday, is a time for ancient customs to be celebrated.  Hand woven palms adorn homes and the aroma of Pinca, the sweet Easter bread baking is in the air in anticipation of the Easter Sunday family luncheon. Hand painted eggs decorated with the precision of an artist creating a masterpiece are given to loved ones and the frequent phrase heard  is Sretan Uskrs (Happy Easter).

Eggs 2

Psanica is a decorated Croatian Easter egg originating from an ancient Slavic custom which dates back to pagan times.  The name is a derivative of the Croatian word which means writing. This year Krizevci, a town in Northern Croatia, presented the village of Orebic with a giant egg which was created by artists from the School of Naïve Art. This is an artistic technique often characterized by a childlike simplicity in its subject manner and the artists are thought to have very little training which is often untrue. Orebic sailor

Orebic sea captain

Our Lady of Angels Church

Our Lady of Angels Church

Orebic national attire

Orebic national attire

Vintage sailing ship

Vintage sailing ship

Giant egg photos by Carol Saric

The egg has been painted depicting vintage traditional motives depicting scenes of Orebic which is known as the sea captains’ town.  I know it well because it is the birthplace of my mother, Tera Mrgudic Sosa, with her family tree traced back to 1642.