Fjaka – Easy to Catch, Hard to Explain

Songs have been written – and are still being written – about the Dalmatian fjaka. Sometimes these are no ordinary songs but true odes. Even those who know how to recognize a fjaka or have been caught by its rhythm, will find it difficult to explain to you in a few words what it is all about. Everyone has an explanation that is actually inexplicable. But they all agree on one thing – that fjaka is a state of mind. There are those who will confuse it with laziness. However, fjaka is not laziness. It is also not fatigue. Fjaka is resting. When the sun, the sea and the afternoon heat combine, the ideal conditions for a quality fjaka are created.

What is actually fjaka and how can you recognize it?

Is fjaka another name for laziness?

As we have already said, many will confuse fjaka with laziness. At first and second glance, there is a thin line between laziness and fjaka. But at a closer, third or fourth, glance, you will see that it is not the same. Better connaisseurs of the fjaka phenomenon will tell you that this is a sublime state of mind and body to which all humanity aspires. And when someone is lazy, they are lazy.

Can fjaka be learned?

It’s hard, because fjaka is an individual thing. The intensity of each individual fjaka is not the same. Fjaka comes empirically, it has to be experienced personally, with a little help from those with more experience who can always give us useful and applicable advice. The opponents of the fjaka would say that the fjaka cannot be learned because there is nothing to learn. We would say that fjaka cannot be learned, but you can catch it.

Some say fjaka is fatigue?

We would sooner say that the fjaka is slowing down, not fatigue. When you catch a fjaka, you slow down. In the words of a driver we would say: ahead of you is a straight road whose end is disappearing in a haze, and you gear down into neutral and wait for the car to stop on its own. You work and stick to the idea that “work is not a donkey who will get away”. Once you catch a fjaka, you learn to appreciate a slower way of life.

How do I explain the fjaka from a scientific perspective?

In some ways, fjaka is a survival style of the people in Dalmatia. You must have noticed that there is no fjaka in colder climates. Fjaka and similar phenomena are common occurrences throughout the Mediterranean where summer temperatures sometimes reach up to 40 ° C. Siesta in Spain, pisolino in Italy …

So, if you want to truly relax, come to Dalmatia and abandon yourself to the fjaka, because when it catches you, you will understand what relaxing truly means. Just take it easy, is what those who have experienced the fjaka would say.