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| 99 whichisperhapstheactualonethatweread about inschoolbookswhenwewerekids, instories thataptlyspokeabout the idea thatnomatterhowpoor youare, if you havebrains, courageand imagination, you can one day become a lifelong president and the object of absolute worship. Agood lesson for the future. And in this story, the parents of little Joža, of course, didn’t have themoney tobuyhima sledge, sohecameupwith the idea of descending the Zagorje hill in a trough that he lubricated with grease. It was interesting to stand in that place that I pictured so vividly inmy imagination as a child, and here I was, with my travels having ledme here for the rst time almost 40 years after Tito’s death. Still, it seemed that our guide knew the same anecdotes that we knew ourselves, so he gave us a somewhatuninventiveaccountof thestoryabout howthehungryJožastoleapig’sheadfrom theattic and fedhismanybrothers andsisters (15 were born, with seven surviving). Josip Broz also liked to recount this story himself, and it found its way into schoolbooks, and here we nd the curators telling it in this museum today. In reality, the noted trough certainly isn’tthatsametrough,becausetheonlyitem in the entire house that actually belonged to the Broz family is a wooden cradle. The rest of the furniture is fromthe late19th and early20th centuries, butwas collected from otherhouses inthevillage. Inthetraditional Zagorjehome, theoriginal architecturehas beenpreserved, andat every step it canbe seenthat theBroz familywaspoor andthat everycornerof this small spacewasutilised wisely. Partof thehousealsocontainsapermanent exhibitionofnewspaper clippings, several relaybatons, and twobustsofTito... Andeverythingappears authenticandvivid,as if the little Jožawill runout of thehouseat any moment. But he won’t, because that boy was replaced by a grown man, a lifesized monument to the marshal sculpted in1948by famousartistAntunAugustinčić. The look of this Tito monument at the entrance to his home was best described by Miroslav Krleža, who also explained why the leader looks so concerned and not triumphant, as would be expected... “... This Tito of Augustinčić isn’t shown in the pose of a commander at the head of his brigades; it is the appearance of a man whose head has grown weary fromheavy worries, who I imagine pacing in circles in thenarrowcourtyardof thefortress inJajce, just as he circled the yards of dungeons for years...”.Touristsaren’tbotheredby themarshal’s worries; thousands of themtake picturesbesidethismonumenteveryyear, and they come – according to Kumrovec folk – from all parts of the world, even the most distant. That’s because foreigners are curious to hear stories about a man who was so loved and so in uential that the whole world came tohis funeral. They’re interested inwhat hewas like aboy, surprised that he was a poor pupil – even repeating rst grade. And that was all because he grew up with his grandfather in Slovenia, so it was di cult for him to switch to the Kajkavian dialect. This is said to be one of the reasonswhyhewasdi cult tounderstand throughout his life, a fact that contributedtothoseconspiracy theories suggesting that he wasn’t even from Croatia. AndTitowas also a badpupil because hehadtotakeacowtograzeandmakesure it didn’t wander o ...“As soon as youmove youreyesaway fromher, sheheads straight for someoneelse’s eld...Andnowyouread thestory totheend!Youhaveaschool task, andthecowknows itsown.Forher, thegrass over there is always more succulent and sweeter,”said the great Josip talking about the troubles of little Joža. And thosehills of Zagorje are really green and lush, because beneath their depths run thermal healing waters that are reason enough to come here even if you’re not interested in Josip Broz at all. Whether you choose the Krapina toplice, Terme Tuhelj or Terme Jezerčica, here you can enjoy it all in abundance. Theywill feedyouevery twohours and, after copious amounts of food, o er you sinfullymoist štrukli that you caneat either as sweetsorsavouries, andwhichareservedas dessert. As if that wasn’t enough, they will also serve you white, red and rosé wines from the endless slopes of their vineyards. From Krapina Neanderthals to the Toplice Heli Centre– theonlyhelicopterpilot training simulator of its kind in Europe... From the revolutionaryMatijaGubec to legends of fairies andmurderedmaidens... There is somuchthatcouldbetold,becausethestory of Tito, and that of Zagorje, hasn’t even scratchedthesurfacehere. Butwe’ll discuss that when we meet again. The Zagorje speciality of štrukli, a kind of cheese pie that is eaten as both a sweet and savoury, was always Tito’s favorite dish Zagorski specijalitet štrukli, neka vrsta pite sa sirom koja se jede i slatka i slana, uvek je bila omiljeno Titovo jelo

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