Day 13, 20 September – The Longest Day

Waking up at 5am while holiday seems a hardship but it was necessary as my coach to Belgrade leaves an hour later. Back in the UK I am used to coach drivers wearing uniforms. The drivers on this coach looked like they had come from the film Taken.

I used the journey to catch up on some sleep. It was not spectacular, the highlight being the border crossing from Bosnia into Serbia. These were the first stamps in my current passport.

Stamp Collecting

I arrived into Belgrade around lunchtime and I had no Serbian money and I could find a ATM. So I was going to have to find my way to the hostel by foot. Despite turning down the offer of a taxi, the driver was kind enough to point me in the right direction. The day was hot and I felt it while struggling with my backpack. Eventually I arrived at the hostel. I slept some more. It was a good opportunity as it was quiet.

When I awoke there was more life around. After doing some laundry and a shower I was feeling hungry. Fortunately others in the hostel were feeling the same. The hostel recommended a restaurant which was over the road. Serving typical Serbian fare I was sorted. However, they struggled to cope with the vegan in the group. She was happy to accept stuffed mushrooms. It is the tradition in Serbia to finish your meal off with a shot of Rakia. Expecting a small shot I was handed what looked like a small test tube with wings. I embarrassed myself by not being able to down it in one. It was only later that I was told I was drinking it correctly.

After the meal we headed over the road to a typical Belgrade bar which we were told to check out. This was very much a local hangout. It was lively as well as packed out. There was a great atmosphere with a band playing traditional folk songs. Everybody was getting ready for the night out. For me, the day had caught up with me. I needed my bed. (Must be my age.)

Until the next post stay safe, stay healthy and keep smiling.

Steve

 

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