Yesterday was Sanja’s birthday so we gorged on food and the Soprano’s and rounded the day off with Hannah Gadsby! The day before began with a coating of snow all over the place but it soon melted away. The temperature has however dropped.
Then yesterday we headed off south in to our woods….
We wondered who had taken over our fave local tourist spot for most of 2019 and now we know! The Petrova Gora monument building is now world famous as it features in the Netflix series Tribes of Europa. The historical parallels are ironic if not amusing!
Sanja and I only got as far as episode three and gave up. The story is really cliched and simple, I guess it’s aimed at teenagers. I will watch the rest at some point just to see how much more of the monument is featured, so far it is by far the most exciting part of the show.
Been spending quite a bit of time, on-line, teaching folk how to speak proppa! Also Sanja and I signed up for the full 8 season popular business studies class at the Soprano academy. we normally manage three or four “lessons” an evening. For me it’s a refresher course but for Sanja it’s her first time in New Jersey! Here are a few pictures of the times we’re not on the sofa or in front of our screens!
The snow has gone and the day time temperature has reached the dizzying heights of 17degreesC! So we have done a bit of outdoor work. Removing the wire fence that divided our field, erecting a couple of benches and wallowing in the gloriious mud that is the “pool project”!
I think these are all self explanatory all though a couple may be a bit bewildering! The snow that gave us this exceitement all but disappeared when it started to come down again and now we are looking out at another picture postcard winter view but without the coca cola truck! At the end are three video links, you might need to click them or might think better of it.
We made it back across the hallowed EU border, Sanja coughed up for a PCR test and I promised that we had no alcohol of fags on board and that was it, waved through. A relief for us, you never know what they might do to you at such border crossings but my relief is always tempered by my sense of guilt that the knowledge of what happens to refugees at such crossings is always infinitely worse.
So a quick reccy of the kitchen brought the joyous news that all my mugs had stayed on their shelves despite the big earthquake only 75km away a few weeks ago and the numerous smaller ones that followed it.
It was damn cold the first night and my desire to not use the wood burning stove heater anymore soon gave way to my desire to remain unfrozen. Sanja was refusing to come out from under the two layers of duvets covering our bed! Lots of emails, ebay and etsy for me to catch up on meant Sanja had to drag me outside for a walk.
We set up Sanja’s laptop with my projector and watched a few things on her Netflix account. Our eyes still firmly “squared” from all the “TV” gawping we did in Belgrade it felt a bit like taking methadone to come off heroin. Pretend it’s a City was however a suprising joy to watch. Whilst having one of our potentially dangerously divisive discussions about what to watch next I remembered having just listened to Radio 4’s Soul Music programme all about David Bowie’s Life on Mars song! Sanja is nothing if not a anglophile when it comes to “telly” and so I dug out some old discs with Life on Mars avi’s downloaded on to them. To my suprise they have played nicely in the DVD player and so that last few nights we have been transported back to Machester, 1973 courtesy of the BBC drama and Sanja is learning all kinds of language that I hope she doesn’t repeat when we get to play scrabble with my fathers friends!!
Then it snowed, properly and we got to finally have a proper snow ball fight!
Never one to make unfair jokey comments at other peoples expense!
This is my second time in Belgrade during the corona crisis and so there are a lot less activities going on here. Those that are I am not allowed to partake of thanks to my zealous “carer” Sanja who worries about my fragile constitution’s ability to cope with a Covid attack! So we have completed two jigsaws, binged on Netflix And downloads till our eyes became oblong, played Boggle and spent a lot of time in bed.
So here are some random images from the last few days.
This post was written whilst I was in BG but I failed to press the “publish” button and so it has languished unread and uncared for till now…..
Anyone with a modicum of Balkan history knowledge will know that there have been a fair few battles fought in this area over the years. We all know how history is written by the victor but what is interesting here is how history or the “appreciation “ of it changes depending on who is in power. Yugoslavia – that was the communist state that no longer exists , for those of you who have not been paying attention – was very proud of its role in defeating the fascists in WW2. (Let’s not get sidetracked by the Croatian fascist regime that fought alongside the Nazis , or the oppression carried out by the commies for now.) Tito, aka Mr Yugoslavia, was a partisan fighter and so it’s not surprising that his regime dotted the country with memorials to fallen partisans and other victims of fascism. These memorials, called Spomeniks, are not though like the boring Cenotaph type structures one see’s in the U.K.. many are wildly imaginative or just plain weird. There is a website all about them and it has long been my intention to visit as many of the more dramatic ones as possible. The current regimes ruling the former Yugoslavia appear to have little time for these monuments to resistance and many are in a terrible state of neglect. So yesterday Sanja and I drove out of Belgrade to see what is left of some of the “Serbian” ones!