Croatia is the home of the Museum of Broken Relationships. Perhaps you have seen some of the items in the US when it was a travelling exhibition. The museum is exactly what it is named; stories and objects related to a relationship that is no longer. The introduction to the museum states, “Our societies oblige us with our marriages, funerals, and even graduation farewells, but deny us any formal recognition of the demise of a relationship, despite its strong emotional effect.”
The children loved this museum. It was full of interesting objects and stories. Really is was a museum of emotions. The stories were, sad, funny, moving, happy, forlorn and each unique. The relationships were all very different, marriages, childhood crushes, family, you name it, they had an object with a story. Brody was especially fascinated by the axe someone used to chop up all their significant other’s furniture. Scarlet and I were particular to the toaster with the tag line, “How are you going to toast anything now?”
The day got even better when we took a break for Belgian waffles. Normally we should just stop while we were ahead but there was more. After lunch we met up with my parents! Yes – Brody has been praying for the day to come when his savior grandparents would come and take away some of his sisters and buy him things. Both of his dreams finally came true. Brenna and Scarlet are heading off with my parents to cruise the Dalmation coast while the rest of us head home. We are breaking up! And my parents bought Brody ice cream.
My parents have been up since yesterday morning but we wanted to spend as much time with them as possible before we split up for good. Of course it meant more museums. My mother is particular to textiles and folk costumes so we visited the Zagreb Ethnographic museum.
The costume exhibit was quite extensive. We were caught a bit off guard by the display of Barbies. The information plaque indicated that Barbie has been a fashion icon doll since the 50’s. I had to take a picture because no one would believe that with all the Croatian outfits someone decided a box of Barbie dolls was needed. I wonder if someone made it as a joke and the rest of the team thought they were totally serious.
During our walk around Zagreb we found a couple of more planets from the “Nine Views” installation: Earth and Mercury.
We had time for a quick run through the Croatian Naïve Art Museum. It was small but had unique pieces that everyone found pleasing. The museum focuses on artists from the area who were untrained. About half of the pieces were done on glass. When painting on glass, the pieces are built backwards so the picture shows through the glass, it is a very distinct look. The children each picked out a postcard of their favorite picture as a souvenir (guess who bought it for them).
The family had a final dinner together at an outdoor café on a bustling square. The food was excellent and the portions very generous. We shared our many adventures and Brody was just a fount of information. A good amount of time was spent discussing the Napolean’s Waterloo battleplan and the number of unsuccessful Hitler assassination attempts – I guess he has been paying attention during all our tours, museum visits and Rick Steves walks!