Sunday, August 30, 2009

It's 1979 here in Belgrade

No, 1979 isn't the temperature -it's what year it feels like. With the
exception of LCD tv's at every cafe showing either soccer or the
summer ski-jumping championships(!?!), you'd think that Belgrade was still on 1979.

I was around for the first version of 1979, though enjoying 3rd grade, so I'm probably not the best judge, but still, everything - starting with my hotel - feels and looks like it has been stuck in time for 30 years.

(or maybe it's just sleepy like I was last night. I finally gave in at 9pm last night, and woke at 3am. After a half hour of tossing and turning - and worry about how badly my body clock might be screwed up
- I fell back asleep until 9am. Result: a bit more sleep than I thought  wanted, but hopefully my body is now on local time, 2009-style.)

One other observation: Belgrade=Pittsburgh. Some of the connections are obvious: both cities are located where 2 pretty big rivers join, with the Ohio and Danube rivers resulting. Both also feature land on one side of the river rising quickly to about 1,000 feet, with great views from the top. Both are about 400 miles inland. Both cities also have a heavy Slavic influence, and are both trying to escape a past focus on heavy industry. Both cities also think they are the center of the universe, though they are just regional capitals. (Ross, Scott, and Doug - please post your defense of da Burgh in the comments section.)

Finally, both cities have been lead by men with self-destructive behavior - Slobodan Milosovic, who made enemies with everyone, and Ben Roethlisberger, crashing his motorcycle into stationary objects, and with a questionable dating life.

A couple other pts:
-had national dish "cevapcici" for dinner last night. We'd probably
call it "hamburger fingers." pretty tasty.
-touring the city today until a 5pm flight to Tivat, Montenegro. Will be spending the following 2 days between Kotor (walled city on a fjord) and Budva, which is a big sea resort town. Many highlights expected, which is amazing since I'd never heard of the country of Montenegro until 2 months ago.

1 comment:

Kathy said...

Tim, is there a language barrier? Do many people speak English?

With my new friends on the Great Wall of China

With my new friends on the Great Wall of China
Click to go to my online photography

World sun clock

Uncommon Man's Creed

"I do not choose to be a common man. It is my right to be uncommon -- if I can. I seek opportunity -- not security. I do not wish to be a kept citizen, humbled and dulled by having the state look after me. I wish to take the calculated risk; to dream and to build, to fail and to succeed. I refuse to barter incentive for a dole, I prefer the challenges of life to the guaranteed existence; the thrill of fulfillment to the stale calm of utopia. I will not trade freedom for beneficence, nor my dignity for a handout. I will never cower before any master, nor bend to any threat. It is my heritage to stand erect, proud, and unafraid, to think and act for myself, to enjoy the benefit of my creations, and to face the world boldly and say, "this I have done." All this is what it means to be an American." -- Anonymous