After we made our way around the breathtaking Cathedral of the Assumption, "Zlatko", a proud local caught us eyeing a guide to the place and appointed himself our tour guide. Zlatko found out we were from USA and gave us two great facts connecting our history to Croatia's. I think he could have done that with any nation and would love to hear how Croatia relates to Iceland or Korea or Namibia. If you remember the father character from "Big Fat Greek Wedding", it was kind of like that - an endearing nationalism.
Croatia's youth as an independent nation is so strange given the long history here (the same is true in Slovenia). In a wonderful bit of perspective picked up today, we learned that the provincial capital RETURNED to Zagreb in 1776 (it had originally been here for a few centuries, left, then returned) the year the USA declared independence.
We leave Croatia on August 5, the national holiday "Homeland Day", commemorating the end of their war for independence.