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You Call These Hookers?

August 19, 2010

I won’t have time to blog as regularly during this trip, so I’ll try to pack as much into each post as possible. I hope you enjoy these scenes from Serbia!

Eat Me

We arrive at my in-laws’ flat after 17-hours of travel (it was all very Planes, Trains and Automobiles) and are immediately told to sit and eat. I’m told this will be a recurring theme of the trip and will be heartbroken if it’s any other way.

In one meal I have four different kinds of meat, soup from scratch, fresh bread and potatoes. There’s a salad that everyone ignores and some carrots that are just for show. Then my mother-in-law brings out a cake that wouldn’t look out of place at a wedding reception.

Afterwards, we decide a walk is in order (either that or an angioplasty) and head to the town square, which is dotted with food kiosks – but instead of hot dogs and pretzels, it’s burek (pron. Boor-eck: a Serbian-style pizza filled with cheese) or Langos (pron. Lan-go-sh: a salty, deep-fried bread for which I would sell a kidney).

This morning my husband returns from the newsstand with cherry-filled burek, a bun filled with Nutella and some other bready goodness. Lunch finds us at a restaurant where he has, “the best f’ing pizza ever made by man.” It has prosciutto, gorgonzola, sausage and much more…the little bit that I steal when he isn’t looking tastes excellent.

I may have to get knocked up on this trip just so I can name my kid 'Burek'

Dueling Divas

Saveta (Sav-ay-tah) is the adorable dog belonging to my in-laws. She rules their hearts and home. At least she did before my 3-year-old daughter rolls in like she owns the joint. Now there’s a new queen of hearts and the dog is not happy.

For months we’ve been telling the kids about this dog – we don’t even have a pet goldfish at home – so this surrogate mutt is a highlight of the trip. Saveta lost her mind yapping at us when we arrived and now, 10 hours later, she shows no signs of letting up (especially when my in-laws go near the kids).

My daughter – who befriends all animals, from rodents to rottweilers – remains unimpressed by Saveta’s jealous fits. She simply laughs at the dog, imitates the barking, and chases her around the room on all fours. Saveta is, understandably, on the verge of a nervous breakdown.

The queen showing the princess who's boss (notice baba - grandma - holding the potty seat...she refuses to be anyone's ass butler)

Hot Wheels

In Serbia, like much of Europe, cyclists rule the roads. In fact, the sidewalks are split in half to accommodate the abundance of bicycles and if the walking lane is obstructed, pedestrians will be better off taking their chances on the road, because people on bikes don’t stop for anything.

The come in all shapes, sizes and conditions.

Two things really stand out for me: over here, nobody on a bike bothers with a helmet; and, you can’t take two steps without a senior (I’m talking serious seniors) whizzing by on a bike.

Speedy Gonzales, serbie-style

Hot (Not) Hookers

The hookers over here are an enigma. At the town square, my husband points out two women who look like office workers (the kind who work in cubicles and are dressed as drab as the décor…I can say that because I used to be one) and tells me they’re looking for customers.

With nary a hot pant or stiletto in sight – never mind interested johns – I hesitate to believe him. He teases me quite often, especially when it comes to Serbian-Canadian matters. A recent example: I asked him to translate to his mother that we were going for a walk. He told her that I said her cooking sucks.

A Final Thought

Europeans don’t use clothing dryers and I love the smell of clothing that’s been hung out to dry. However. Do I really need to see my father-in-law’s ginch hanging on the line? And more importantly, does he really need to see mine?

Y'all don't need to be seeing hookers or underwear, so I bring you the ubiquitous YUGO!

20 Comments leave one →
  1. marinasleeps permalink
    August 19, 2010 4:23 pm

    Hookers … how exotic. I remember when I went to vegas at like 10 yrs old. My mother walked around covering my eyes. To technically I never actually saw Vegas.

    • August 20, 2010 9:39 am

      Marina – that is hilarious! I went to Vegas at 10 too (saw the Village People – yes, I’m old) and my dad kept getting solicited on my behalf!

  2. August 19, 2010 4:27 pm

    Love it! I am now hungry from reading. Keep ’em coming!

    • August 20, 2010 9:40 am

      Ugh – just ate my weight in various meaty stuff – would kill for a spear of asparagus right now…

  3. Debra Kenly Troescher permalink
    August 19, 2010 5:12 pm

    Love it! Keep the story and pics coming!! Say hello to you lovely and humorous husband!

    • August 20, 2010 9:38 am

      Deb! Sto says ‘hey’ and I’m so glad you’re reading along… 😀

  4. Kevin permalink
    August 19, 2010 11:52 pm

    If I learn how to make Langos, can I have her kidney?

    Love the stories! Can’t wait to read more.

  5. August 20, 2010 7:11 am

    You make me want to head to Serbia. FOR THE BREAD AND PIZZA! Not the hookers and underwear. Sheesh woman. Is your mind ALWAYS in the gutter?! 🙂 Love this post. Waiting for more!

    • August 20, 2010 9:37 am

      More is coming – as soon as I have a nap – last night kicked our asses…I didn’t fall asleep until 5am after taking a sleepeze…but I just had a meat platter for lunch (tomato garnish for veggies) and that should put me out for a couple of hours!

  6. August 20, 2010 8:00 am

    Love the post!! =D

  7. August 20, 2010 8:03 am

    It’s funny to see how foreigners look upon Europe – it makes me realize that the boxes I put other nationalities in probably should be a bit bigger :). Serbia is NOT representative for Europe, though (well, at least Croatia wasn’t and that’s in the same box as Serbia to me 😉 ). And we DO use clothing dryers! In winter… These things just use a HUGE amount of energy and in addition, wind-dried sheets smell so much better… Curious to hear more on your trip!

    • August 20, 2010 9:36 am

      I totally agree with you and would never suggest that our tiny slice of one country represents all the rest – I just remember seeing clothes drying on lines when I was in other countries (way) back in my youth…I love the smell! My husband only moved to Canada 15 years ago, and he gets a kick out of the things we (me and our kids) have been saying on this trip…he refers to me as a “Winnipeger” when I sound close-minded 😉

  8. Jaap permalink
    August 20, 2010 10:42 am

    So funny! I was gonna write a piece on how Americans (and now also Canadians!) see Europe, then I saw the comment that Lies made… I am totally with Lies on this one!!! 😉

    Having said that, some Europeans also have prejudices about Canada.. Some think that Canadians live in 20 ft of snow all year round, your 1st language is French and that you still club baby seals! (huh?)

    Keep your blogs coming, I love them!!! Have a great time in Serbia! (I’ve been there twice and I loved it!)

    • August 20, 2010 11:56 am

      Jaaaaaaap! Thanks for reading and leaving a comment! I definitely want to get up to your side on our next visit – we can compare our misconceptions about Canada/Europe (you wear clogs, right?) 😉

      • Jaap permalink
        August 20, 2010 12:01 pm

        Hey, you guys have an open invitation to stay with us in Holland for a few days, I will show you the real Holland! 😉 Enjoy your time in Serbia!

  9. Lynne permalink
    August 21, 2010 12:25 pm

    Loved your post, Toots. Please say hi to the family and in-laws for me – but don’t let Stole translate.
    Safe travelling.

  10. August 22, 2010 10:19 am

    Love it, love it, love it! Yay to your mother-in-law for not being an ass butler, maybe after the trip you won’t be either 🙂

    • August 22, 2010 2:13 pm

      I swear to God, at the airport in Toronto she demanded to go on the toilet…but then toyed with me and nothing happened. One day…

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