Saturday, April 6, 2013


Common scenario in Serbia:

There's a bakery downtown (Toma) that has a separate pizza counter. Pizza is good, so there's usually a line-up of 5-6 people.

Pizza slice is 1.10 euros (equivalent in Serbian dinars)

Guy at the front of the line as a 2euro bill.

Girl behind the counter doesn't have change.

She harangues the customer for not having exact change.

She has to leave the pizza counter, wade through the people lining up at the other counter, beg her colleague to make change.  Colleague does reluctantly, complaining loudly every step of the way.   Pizza counter girl pushes her way back to the pizza counter, snapping at people to get out of her way and makes it behind the counter  (elapsed time, 3-4 minutes).  She returns the change and the next customer orders.

Next customer pays with a 2euro bill

She doesn't have change  :|



  1. "Pizza is good"

    Ah, so you can at least admit Serbs can make decent pizza.

  2. Well, with such misadventures...maybe you should not live in Serbia and go somewhere else, where misadventures will surely turn into adventures.

  3. You seem quite bitter about the state of things here in Serbia. It's true living in this country is very difficult, and most of us poor Serbs have no way out. But you're an American citizen, right? If you hate it so much here, why don't you just go home?

    It's a little sad you waste your time on blogging about things that annoy you here and yet you're still here 3 years later. If you want to do something good, and you really have Serbian roots, maybe try to make a change in this place? Create job opportunities with your business? Serve as a positive role model to people around you? Talk to the manager of that pizza place about ways he/she could improve customer service? There's a zillion things you could be doing that are all way better than sitting on your bum and complaining.

    And if you're not up for the challenge, then seriously dude... pack your bags and leave. Unlike most of us, at least you have a choice.

    1. "Talk to the manager of that pizza place about ways he/she could improve customer service?"

      This remark betrays the fact that you don't live in Serbia and likely have never lived in Serbia.

  4. Seriously dude...try not to get into a long line of people. Also what the other Seriously dude person said.

    It can be trying, even excruciatingly painful to live here at times, but there is great opportunity to do good things here that can have a huge impact on the lives of others.

  5. Living here is very unfair and hard. You can't do anything without money, and the main key to getting money is robbing. In Serbia, banks rob you! Rich people are getting even more rich, and poor people are doomed. There's this politican that promises us to build a road. The same guy bought a flat for him and his wife that costs 500000 euros! The idea for that road lasts for years now, and it still isn't finished. Yeah, Serbia is a very weird country. I don't like living in it. We need more of people like you who will say:'' Hey Serbs, what the hell is wrong with your country? It's all messed up! Why don't you try to do something to make things better?''. Actually, I doubt that will help. But you can at least try to do something instead.

  6. ah, i'm sooo happy that i found your blog. i'm also in a similar situation with some kind of well-intended commitments in Serbia, I just didn't realise how fucked this place was before i signed up for this deal. i really like to be a positive person, see the good in the world etc, etc, but here, my goodness, i just can't take any more. this is an awful country, and i'm so over people trying to convince me that it's god's gift to the world. when people find out that i'm a foreigner they immediately pull out their inferiority complexes, and start treating me like i'm a rich bastard that caused all of their problems. part of my problem is that i feel bad letting my opinions loose, and also that i can't (i'm sure you can relate), but man, i'm going insane, and could certainly do with some kind of therapy myself, even if it's not a long term solution. anyway, somehow this makes me feel better, even if this is just a place to rant about my own problems.
    many thanks

    1. "So, how do you like Serbia?".... waits expectantly for gushing praise

  7. in fact, i'm really not sure why people are still living here.

  8. Afraid to admit....but all this is true....afraid to say that I'm Serbian too....( now Serbs gonna attack
    But must say there is still lots of good in many of us...but not really in Belgrade....why...because they think that they are something better then Serbs from province or Serbs from any other part of former Yugoslavia.
    LOL....and maybe because they have so many "management" universities.
    Anyway ....attitude mixed with muscle and plastic is bad combination.