Genital Farts: A Classy Start

Posted on March 20, 2014

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The more things change, the more they really don’t change. Do I say that every year? For want of a more mystifying and enigmatic answer, yes, yes I do. In the 21 hours that I’ve been back in Belgrade I ate Čevapčiči, drank Turkish coffee and Jelen pivo, smoked Drina. I was met at the airport by glorious people, and much like a surprise party it’s strange how much of a lift that can give a person. After years of claiming to enjoy airports, reality has kicked in on the last couple occasions. Airports suck. To quote Dick Bent, they could suck for hoover. London Luton certainly didn’t have its organisational head on yesterday, as one big queue became two separate queues which fed back into the same big queue, with a man in a suit running around shouting all the while.

I was not that man in that suit.

The staff maintained their smiles though, and I’m not one to get stressed about queuing, especially when I have a Belgrade at the end of it. Security was as security is, more queues, more waiting. Do you have any laptops in you bag? Coats, belts, watches, all electronic items please. I can understand the almost pathological paranoia on display, but the truth is I can’t understand the pathological paranoia. In an attempt to make everything ultra safe, British airports are surely pushing people to the point of primal idiots. No wonder so many people were drinking in the airport bar at 8.30. The minor details aren’t important here, except I got on a plane, flew over the continent, didn’t spill coffee on myself this time and landed into the loving arms of Jan and Kovča. By 2pm we were in the centre of Belgrade, and I remembered just how violent rakija is. My throat struggled to comply, but comply it did. 

After eating a total of no food during the first 14 hours of the day, it was imperative to find some nutrition. 5 months is a long time to go without quality vops, so we headed out into the drizzle towards a little place called To Je To (That’s It) on Bulevar Despota Stefana. I swear to god on high, they have the best kajmak I have ever tasted in all of my days. Things got heavy quickly, as conversations in multi-national groups tend to, with Syria and the world at large dominating the subject matter. Luckily, we realised we were children at heart and moved on before becoming too depressed with the world. KC Grad was our next port of call, and despite them not actually being open Boško was kind enough to allow us a pivo in a plastic cup, because class is the only option sometimes. A gentle stroll along the river Sava followed, all be it one punctuated with talk of genital farts because immature, before heading back to Zeleni Venac, the only place where a simple hug can lead to broken glass. I said my teary goodbyes to Jan and Kovča, and began to stroll towards Četinjska and an evening drink with Una. I still can’t remember the name of the place we went because my memory is horrific, but it had big stairs, low lamps and good music. I haven’t heard ‘Island in the Sun’ (Weezer) in years. 

Una has recently completed a stint as manager (MANAGER!) of the Belgrade Irish Festival and her spirits were high. As I’m embarking on another Slavic odyssey my spirits were equally high, and catching up with people is always better in such mood. Not that it would be any other way, Una is certainly in that select group of people I’ve met where years can pass and catching up would be as natural as anything. As far as people go, she’s a cracker. 

And that’s me for the next few weeks. Sitting around Belgrade, catching up with people and re-acquainting myself with this glorious place. I plan on heading to Southern Serbia and Bosnia for a week or so, as Kovča has told me about a seemingly hilarious wax museum, and if there’s one thing I love its a terrible wax museum. Mostar and Sarajevo call as well, for what would be my 10th (TENTH) Bata’s Crazy tour and an inevitable Kino Bosna. Oh, and maybe a pivo along the way.

Maybe.

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