Belgrade is the bestest city in the world

5 June 07

The Bus

Belgrade city bus number 16 is a type of a bus line that gives you the creeps. It connects Karaburma with New Belgrade – two parts of the city one seldom has need or desire to visit.

That’s why a young, caucasian male was standing in the front of the bus, leaning on a bar separating him from the driver, trying to get distracted from the idea of where the bus will take him by watching the driver drive and press all the little knobs and buttons that make the bus go and doors open.

The bus was now at the stop and the driver pressed four unlabeled buttons at once to open the doors. Hydraulics voiced, passengers started pushing each other by defying laws of physics and trying to enter and leave the bus at the same time. The engine stalled.

— Damn bus, it keeps fucking doing this all fucking day long! – the driver was being professional. He pressed the gas pedal and tried to restart the engine.
— Let off the gas — said the young caucasian male — you’ll flood the engine.
— No I won’t, it needs gas to fire up.
— Fuel is injected, there is no carburetor, it won’t work.
— Hey, what do you know? I’ve been driving this same bus for 15 years now, I know how it works!
— That’s why it won’t start… – the young caucasian smartypants said.

Clearly frustrated, the driver yelled out at passengers to leave the bus and pulled the smart ass guy by his hand. They got to the center of the bus and the driver opened up the access to the engine.

— See that? That’s a carburetor!
— No it’s not, that’s a distributor cap!
— In a diesel!? – the driver was furthering the academic debate.
— Oh… what do you know, it does have a carburetor…


The Clippers

Finding a decent barber shop in Belgrade isn’t particularly easy. Obviously, you never want to have different political views from a person holding scissors around your head. Nor do you feel comfortable at a barber shop where the main topics of conversation are Eurovision, sports and how to abuse women.

I thought I found a good place to cut my hair. A bit overpriced, but we keep silent throughout the entire affair. Until yesterday:

— How do you want your hair cut? — asked the barber.
— As usual — said I.
— You mean, with the clippers?
— As usual.
— The clippers don’t work.
— As usual.
— Ivana! — the barber yelled out at his apprentice — tell that Bosnian bastard Marko that the next time he borrows the clippers, I want it returned in working condition!
— As usual — Ivana repeated my words as a promise that she will cut hair without discussion when she grows up.
— Ok, I’ll just do it with the scissors – the barber addressed me — but it might be uneven.
— Never mind. Uneven matches my personality!


The Doctor

— I’ve been waiting for Doctor Petrović for 2 hours now, is he coming? — I inquired at the nurses’ office if Petrović will come anytime soon.
— I don’t know — the nurse replied.

A dozen of us were waiting for Dr. Petrović to show up, but he didn’t. Meanwhile, his three nurses were measuring each other’s blood pressure, seeming to take great pleasure in that activity.

— Well, can you perhaps page him? — I was optimistic.
— Do what?
— Page him.. you know, like in American movies… — I had lost hope to get an answer to that question.

— What about a cell phone, or his home phone? Just call him, so I know if I should wait for him or come back another time.
— It would be most inappropriate to disturb Prof. Dr. Petrović like that — said the nurse.
— But we are waiting here! — I tried to represent all of us in the waiting room.
— No you are not. You are arguing with me. Now sit down and wait!

— I’ve been waiting for Doctor Petrović for 4 hours now, is he coming?
— I’m a nurse, not psychic…
— So what am I supposed to do? Wait?
— I can take your blood… or measure your blood pressure…
— Sure, do that… Let me make this wasted Monday worthwhile…

There is hope for Belgrade…


  1. igor
    Jun 9, 03:24 AM #

    How much is an overpriced haircut in Belgrade? (I just want to know if I got one last time I was there)

  2. Dejan
    Jun 10, 07:56 PM #


    I’d say an overpriced haircut is 500 YUD RSD.

    Overpriced bus is 60 RSD (those shuttle lines).

    Overpriced doctor is Black Label (Red Label should do it). :)

  3. bganon
    Jun 11, 08:21 PM #

    Classic tales.. Good stuff!

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