Saturday, May 26, 2012

Belgrade Nighlife.

A few years ago, two newspapers separately included Belgrade in its list of cities with the best nightlife.

Serbs, ecstatic that someone was writing something about Serbia that didn't include the words 'genocide', 'ethnic cleansing' or 'ICTY', or things one typically associates with Serbia, jumped ALL over it.

It is now true for some, a-priori, that Belgrade nightlife is the best in the world.

So....  Sometimes in order to make small talk, and to elicit a compliment about their terrible city, I'll sometimes get asked "So, how do you like our nightlife??"

In a nutshell:  It's perfectly average and there's lots of it.

Most people are unemployed and live with their parents well into their late 30s, so there's lots of people to fill the clubs.  People tend to be physically attractive, so there's eye candy.

So, if you go out once in Belgrade, you will have a good time, or at least seem to.

Problems are:

Serbs are basically a-social.  No one is speaking to anyone outside of the group they came with (these will be the same people they went to elementary school with).

There is no sex.  Serbs tend to be a bit nervous about sex.  Chances of getting laid from a random at the bar are slim.  In my three years here, it's happened twice.

There are no drugs.  ok, so not everyone likes drugs, but they've gotta be around to qualify for the top 50 "best night-life cities

So, no mixing and mingling.  no sex and no drugs.

but it does stay open late and there's lots of it.

So, you're welcome to stay up all night and have people ask you how much you like Belgrade.

I gave up on it a while ago.

"you just haven't met the right people"

Sometimes I let my guard down and actually tell people I hate Serbia.  silly me.

They always look for some "reason", other than the obvious "it's a dirty, dysfunctional shit-hole, inhabited by proud primitives".

I've been here for some time.  I speak almost fluent Serbian.

Let's get this straight.  I hate Serbia because I DO understand it, not because I somehow don't.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Nosey Landlords

Another thing that makes Serbia a village society is how much people allow themselves to ask private questions.

Yesterday, when my landlord was collecting the rent, he entitled himself to walk through my entire apartment, opening all the doors.  This time I knew better and just went along with it.

I've had this happen a few times.  I just come home and landlord is there waiting for me.  wtf.

One landlady threw me out because I was a spy because I travel too much.  I don't even know what to say.

Monday, April 30, 2012

flying to/from Belgrade

Flights to Belgrade anger me for 2 reasons.

1) it appears as though most people bathe in whatever free perfume they can get at the duty free.  There's an expression in Serbian:  "when free, even vinegar is sweet".  It appears as though this proverb holds true.  It's either that or every toilet-cleaner in Zurich is taking a few days off and going to put on some airs for their compatriots back home.

2) It astonishes me, every single time, to the point that it astonishes me that it astonishes me how child-like Serbs behave when the plane lands.

Look,  We're all going to be on the same bus to the airport terminal. We're all going to the same passport control.  We're all going to be waiting at the same luggage claim.  Do you really think that leaping up and trying to worm you way to the front of the plane is going to get you home faster than me who's sitting pretty?

That is all.