Dear Serbia

Dear Serbia,
Thank you. 
Thank you for helping me realize who I am and what more I could do and become. I am constantly evolving through the inspiration this new land has given me.  


As I look back, I can see how living in Serbia has changed me. The changes occurred slowly over time, but they are HUGE!


Serbia has inspired me to write. Before I came to Serbia, I was never inclined to record my thoughts or experiences. Now, I am inspired daily by the culture, nature, and my experiences. I could write a book on the inspiration Serbia has given me. 


It was always on my mind to teach English, and my first attempt was abysmal. After taking a course giving me the tools and education I needed, I began to teach. 


Becoming certified to teach has opened many new doors. I am always using my bachelor’s degree in intercultural studies and social sciences in tandem with my teaching certification. 

Continuing to learn more and expand my teaching abilities with new training is important to me. Thank God for the internet and all the schools online! I want to become a great teacher.


After almost four years and thousands of classes, I am in love with teaching. I have taught children as young as two up to retired folks. My students have come from around the world and I am enjoying every minute. It is thrilling to meet new people and help them reach their goals.


Teaching was always in my heart. I began when I was in elementary school. I was probably eight years old. My little sister was lugging around stacks of books. She was aching to learn to read at the age of 4. I opened my old school books and taught her the alphabet.  Then I taught her to read and write. I also taught her the simple math I knew at the time. 


She was a sponge. She learned everything very quickly. When she began kindergarten, she was immediately bumped up to first grade.


I know that it wasn’t my parents that did the teaching. My mother had a severe learning disability and didn’t learn to read until I finished high school. 

My father worked a lot. On top of that, I would guess he has Asperger’s syndrome from the way he acts socially. He was never diagnosed. Both of my parents loved us all and gave us a great deal of love and care as parents should. As a result, I am without a doubt, I was the educator. 


My teaching didn’t stop there. At about the same time, I was taking gymnastics. I was excelling. I loved it more than anything else! During recess, I would teach the girls in my class the things that I learned in gymnastics class. I would perform the new things I had learned on the grass or on the bars and then have the girls who were interested in learning, line up and I would teach them what I had learned. I had forgotten all of this until just recently when thinking of my teaching journey. 


Serbia has helped me to see the gift and realize my potential. I am energized by helping others learn grammar and improve pronunciation. 


Recently I even tutored a student in China; she went on to pass tests that allowed her to work in the U.S. She has since been offered a position at a firm in New Jersey! My heart bursts with joy because of her success! 


Because of Serbia, I see with new eyes and I hear with new ears. I listen slowly to grasp the meaning of Slavic words. Learning the Serbian language and all the cultural beliefs and traditions have changed my brain to some extent. I have a long way to go with the language, but I am looking forward to becoming fluent.


Living in Serbia has given me the most amazing new friends. The people here are so kind. I was blessed on my first visit to meet a few women who have become the dearest of friends. I cherish their friendship, understanding, and the things they have taught me. I am incredibly grateful for their forgiveness for the mistakes I have made. There have been so many!


Lastly, I am grateful for the inspiration Serbia has given me to begin painting. The barren cinderblock walls of our barn invited me to begin.  One summer day I started with watercolors. Flowers soon were blooming inside the barn. I gathered more courage and began to paint the front of the barn. 


One day I was feeling incredibly alone here in the village.  I wanted to cheer myself up with a bit of sun. I chalked out an outline of a sun. The sun’s rays bolstered my desire to create. My ideas flourished. 


My painting journey has been slow. But now there is a large mural with a sun and moon. I am continuously thinking of new creatures to add. It is my magical wall. It is magical because it inspires me to do more and lifts my spirits. 


While none of these achievements are astronomical, they have helped me to evolve. Without Serbia’s inspiration, prodding, and even the heartbreaking challenges I have faced, I have so much to be grateful for. Thank you for your inspiration and your nurturing environment. I am continuing to grow and learn from you every day.

Teaching English Language traditional Holidays! St. Patrick’s Day Edition

Happy St. Patrick’s Day to ya! I am wearing green in honor of the day. Back home it is a custom and if you are caught without something green you are likely to get pinched!  I plan to eat some cabbage for dinner which is also a tradition. I may also have a swig of beer with the cabbage. We will see. 

Kiss Me, I’m Irish is a common phrase associated with St. Patrick’s Day. It often appears on T-shirts. It originates from the legend of the Blarney Stone, which is believed to bring luck and eloquence to those who kiss it. I have heard this isn’t a great idea as some Irish who are annoyed by tourists pee on the stone… Maybe it is more yucky thank lucky. 😉 

Today, I asked a student what he thought when he saw the Kiss Me I’m Irish shirt. He told me, “Maybe Irish people like kissing?” We laughed. I told him about the Blarney Stone. I also told him that in Serbia we kiss people when we meet three times on the cheeks. He said that is TOO MUCH. LOL  We laughed again. Sharing cultural traditions and holidays are so much fun! I love sharing mine and learning about others. This is the good stuff!

The Irish are known for their blessings. Here is a lovely Irish blessing for the close of my St. Patrick’s day post. May good luck be with you wherever you go, and your blessings outnumber the shamrocks that grow. May your days be many and your troubles be few, May all God’s blessings descend upon you, May peace be within you, May your heart be strong, May you find what you’re seeking wherever you roam.

Happy St. Paddy’s day y’all!

Below is an Engoo lesson on St. Patrick’s day if you are interested. 

https://engoo.com/app/lessons/green-expressions-for-st-patricks-day/rQVs5EREEeqhi4tsW53Hdw

Jumpstart Your Year!

For the last 6 months to a year, I have become more tenacious about achieving goals.

I know I am not the only one looking for ways to BECOME better, smarter, wiser, and inspire others. 💪

👉If you are trying to improve your English, this can help you as well! It is an excellent multitasking opportunity. Watch and listen to these inspiring videos that will help you learn while you practice your English listening skills. Win/Win!

One of my favorite ways to learn is to watch Ted talks and educational videos on youtube. I take notes and post the most important things on a board beside my desk.

Recently, I have been a bit overwhelmed by the number of books I want to read, but I realized that finding the time to complete the list would put a dent in my other pursuits.

Then 💡 I realized I could find quality summaries from youtube videos. SCORE! ⚽

Here are two of the books I have been wanting to read. And the videos that have cut my learning time down to a fraction.

You can also look for other summaries that will help you hear the same tips in another way helping you to really grasp the concepts!


For the record, I still want to read the books, but NOW I can implement the wisdom of the books immediately. In turn, I will see personal improvements in my life in the next month rather than in the next year when I finally get around to reading the books. Huge win for me!

Without further ado, here are 3 videos to encourage, enlighten, and inspire!

Atomic Habits by James Clear 💣

The 5AM Club by Robin Sharma has inspired me to get up earlier and has helped me to achieve more each day. 🔥

One more! This video gave me a new perspective on rejection and resilience. What I learned from 100 days of rejection.

I hope this helps you. I found this video very enlightening. It’s funny too! 😂

I hope this has given you some wisdom and motivation. I had to share it because it really helped me to jumpstart the year. Happy New Year everyone!

The Ginger Bread House

For Christmas Eve I opened a sweet sacred box containing the walls, foundation, roofing, and decorations. I dug out my piping bag and mixed up the icing/glue that would hold it all together. The plan was to decorate and create some Christmas spiced memories.

The munchkin and I worked to build the house, holding each piece in place till the glue held tight. We worked to decorate each side and enjoyed a Christmas movie in the background.

Does anyone else feel like Hansel and Grettle eating the witch’s house when they break off a piece to eat?

Looking back I realized I could have done a much better job. I should have decorated some parts before constructing the sweet little home. I could have used less icing to make it. I learned that a bit of strategy and more rest would have made it more beautiful.

But most of all I learned that moving forward prepared me for a better plan next time. That the experience and memories made were enough. We had a great time. I hope we can do it again.

Beyond those great Christmas family memories, upon reflection, the gingerbread house taught me that with enough rest and strategic planning, and actually putting in the work, we can achieve a lot more than we think we can.

Lately, I have been working too much. Working too much makes us surprisingly less productive. If I stopped, planned, and thought about what I wanted more and found a way to those goals, I could do so much more.

So, here is to resting, planning, assessing, and, creating to achieve the goals I want to achieve.

I encourage you to rest, assess, and find out what you want to achieve, then make plans. Goals are just dreams without a plan.

Happy New Year to all.

Dear Ex-pat MOM

Dear ex-pat Mom,

Are you feeling stressed, overwhelmed, or maybe like you have lost your identity?

I know the stress you are feeling, I feel it every day still but it is getting better. After finally finding work online, I am working on balancing home and work. Fortunately, the commute is just to the next room.

Let me tell you my story. I am from the U.S. and we have moved to Serbia. I began writing this blog on another platform on my first short-ish trip. Then the writing got real on our third and longer venture. We had a small child. I wrote to share life experiences and cultural revelations.

At that point, writing became my thing. I wrote mentally even when I wasn’t writing physically. It was an outlet that inspired me and gave me mental stimulation when I felt like a human milk maker and baby carrier. The little’s naps gave me a tiny bit of freedom. I used that free time to write. That wee bit of writing helped me to become something new.

Winter was cold. Venturing out was exhausting. Bundling up was a chore. Walking flights of stairs to leave and return often was mentally discouraging. Then there were the outdoor challenges of language and pushing a stroller on uneven pavement and through markets and stores narrow aisles. My local friends also had little ones so the isolation was the same for them.

Time differences and sleep schedules made calls to home complicated. I was really lonely.

Later, when we were back in the U.S. I was hiking a trail and came across a Viet Namese woman who was in much the same boat, just on another shore. We talked as we walked and shared our stories. She expressed the same feelings I had when I was a foreigner in Serbia. I realized as I met others like me, that this was a common international problem.

Over time, I came to see this was a common occurrence. Women are often the caregivers and the trailing spouses become isolated by language, culture, and family responsibilities.

During this time of transition, stress, and turmoil we often get lost, overwhelmed, and struggle to keep our heads above water. The challenge is real.

I am here to bolster you. This transition is EXTREMELY DIFFICULT! Be patient with yourself. Be patient with your spouse. Find things that you love, and find a community even if it is only online to help you feel connected. This connection is crucial to a healthy mental state.

Once you make it through this complicated transition, you will never be who you were. You will BECOME more. Stronger, smarter, more empathetic, and learn tools to manage you never could have dreamed of in your past life. You are in transition. You are the caterpillar transitioning to a beautiful butterfly. You will soon fly.

Let me give you examples from my life, I started writing. I never had words to put to paper before this reincarnation. And it really is a reincarnation.

I painted a mural (still in progress) on my barn. I am an amateur, but it was an amazing creative outlet. Like this blog, I used the time putting color on the grey cement walls to fill my brain with positive feelings and inspire me with my accomplishments.

I got a teaching Certification! I hit the books hard. I studied and completed the task while burning the wick at both ends. I learned to teach English. The end result, I love it. This is my greatest pleasure. Adults, children, professionals, and students alike are a new challenge. I want to find a way to help them all.

While I focus on helping medical professionals, I have extracurricular English goals. One of my favorites is working with children. I love teaching children baseball and doing other fun activities in English. I am on a journey to discovering a new me. It is Exciting.

If you have been an ex-pat mom or are on that journey, let me know where you are. I would love to hear about your adventures, cultural experiences, and enlightening moments.

If I can help you learn English, don’t hesitate to ask.

You don’t know until you KNOW

Homemade wool socks form the neighbor’s sheep. Home-made canned cherries.

This applies to so much in life. I have found the things I believed as a child and even as an adult were not as they seemed time and time again. These misconceptions are multiplied when you live internationally. Some concepts are placed within language, culture, and tradition. We don’t question them. They just ARE.

There are so many unwritten rules that we learn almost from conception. But they are just perceptions. One way of seeing or doing things. Yet, they are presented as an unwavering truth.

I remember, my brother-in-law having an oil stain on his shirt. I had been told my whole life that if an oil stain is dried in a dryer, there is no hope of removal. The stain is set. He had not grown up with a dryer and never heard this. He worked on the stain and removed it. I still don’t know how! I was astonished. But this was just one of the revelations to come in the coming years as one straddling countries, beliefs, and traditions. It is truly eye-opening!

The need for slippers.

My grandmother used to say, “You will catch your death of cold.” I never found this to be more true than in a Serbian village house in the winter. The homes here are made of cement. The walls are thick. If they have been left to chill in the winter, they are a veritable ICEBOX!

Enter the fear of being barefoot and the need for slippers ANY TIME OF YEAR!

In my home country of the U.S. slippers are optional. Often, the homes are warm and well insulated. On our first few extended trips to Serbia, we lived in an apartment. The heating was more than adequate. We were on the third floor. The heat rises and the floors were not even slightly cool. Then, on our fourth and longest trip to Serbia, we moved to a village house. This was a perfect place of freedom during COVID quarantine, but I learned the need for slippers is real. The cold comes up through the ground. The ice monster wraps itself around your feet swallowing you like an anaconda. You are chilled to the bone. Regaining your vital warmth is essential. Slippers are the barrier that may protect you from this deathly chill. Slippers are necessary if you are in this style of home. I now KNOW the necessity of slippers. Though, I still love bare feet in the summer or when the home doesn’t threaten my soul with a lasting chill.

When we first arrived, I noticed immediately that slippers were a huge deal. When entering a home, you remove your shoes and are given slippers to wear. I like being barefoot and declined to the shock of some of the hosts.

I am sure they have all experienced the bone-chilling cold I told you about. There are many old wives’ tales associated with that. (We won’t venture down that rabbit trail at this time.) Thus the deep-seated fears associated with bare feet.

Maybe there is something more I don’t know. on being barefoot in this area. But I do KNOW being barefoot where I come from is normal, healthy, and it just feels good in the grass, sand, and on a nice carpet. Where ever! I love being barefoot whenever possible. Cue the Shakira song, Wherever whenever!

In many European countries, air conditioning is seen as unhealthy and dangerous! There are lots of rumors of how it has caused illness or even killed someone. I have heard these protests first hand from Europeans fresh off the boat, but just like I had no idea of how frigid the cement block homes of Serbia could become, the newcomers to the U.S. do not know the dangers of the heat in our homes. Some poorly insulated old homes become ovens cooking the residence. Without air conditioning, people do die. The deaths are added to the statistics and are reported on the news. 

When heat waves hit, large air-conditioned buildings are available in every community for those without essential AC’s. The elderly are usually the most in need of rescue. They are the ones who succumb to the high temperatures.

That same brother-in-law I spoke of earlier used to tell me how dangerous air conditioning was. He now lives in Miami. I am sure his opinion of central air has changed immeasurably with life experience in one of the hottest cities in the U.S.

What you “know” may be subject to change. What your friends or acquaintances “know” is the same. Be careful of your judgments, be kind and forgiving of yourself and others. Also, be kind and forgiving of me as I post my perceptions of Serbia. I am aware they may be wrong. My perceptions may change. Many already have.

You really don’t know, until you know.

Covid Vaccine. Serbia

This is my personal experience.

 In Serbia, in the very early months of 2021, we were able to sign up online for the vaccine. We both signed up for any vaccine to be first in line for whatever was available. The aged and vulnerable were given the vaccine first. Now, it was the rest of the populace who were able to get the shot. 

 My husband is a national. I am a foreigner. He was called the next day to go to the local Dom Kultura for the shot. He got AZ.  Because of the social healthcare. The shot was free. The second dose is 3 months later. 

I was called several weeks later. I was told to go to the Sajam or fairgrounds in the capital city of Belgrade to get the shot the next morning. That is 4 hours north, I had to work. I did not go. 

I am glad because the place was reportedly packed! Hours of waiting in long lines with far too many people is not a healthy idea in the time of Covid, the whole reason for the vaccine. A few day’s later the news channels made note that tons of internationals were crowding the facilities for vaccines since Serbia is one of the few countries that seems to have enough to go around.

More than a month later, I was visiting my neighbor and our Dr. friend told me Pfizer was coming the next week. I was not partial to any country’s vaccine, but something was comforting about hearing my own country’s shot would come to our small town. 

Then, the following week, I was having coffee with my bestie. Her husband heard on the radio there was an open call for the vaccine at the Dom Kultura where my husband had been jabbed. I went early the next day to get the shot. 

I was nervous but drove to town early in the morning. I entered the doors and they sprayed my hands with sanitizer and took my temp. The man asked, “Pfizer?” I said, “Sure.” I had no preference. But, if I want to go home this is a preferred shot to have on record. Some are not preferred, I am sure it is all politics. 


The building was mostly empty. I went to the first table where a lady was filling out the form with the vital info that needs to be recorded. This info must be precise for the shot.  It allows you to go abroad is so it must match your passport info. They are meticulous. 

My Serbian is not great and I was alone. I am proud to say, I did just fine explaining my maiden name is my middle name when the paperwork was not right. I got the needle with no waiting and came home to work. I felt fine. The first Pfizer shot was no big deal. Just a sore muscle from the needle that lasted a few days. 

My second Pfizer shot was three weeks later. This was a force to be reckoned with. 

At this time, the Dom Kultura was packed when I arrived at 8:30 in the morning. Serbia was giving a monetary incentive for the unvaccinated to get the vaccine. This $$ incentive was enough to instigate the throngs to come out of the woodwork to get the controversial injection.

The night before I got an automated email telling me to come at to the Dom Kultura at 8 AM. The national office cannot communicate with all the cities and towns to arrange for things to be perfect. I found that the early hours were offering the Chinese vaccine. Pfizer shots began at 11 AM. 


I came back about half an hour early. I prepped for my classes while I waited. My first class was scheduled to begin at 12:30 and I still had to drive back to the village. The place was still packed and the Chinese vaccines still had a wait.

I queued and was the first of three people in line after the Sinvac vaccinations were completed.  I was one of the first three in line for Pfizer. My vaccines began at 12. One kind lady let me go ahead of her.   I waited just a few minutes after the vaccine to see if I would have a reaction but knew I must get home quickly for my lessons.  I was 3 minutes late for my first class… I missed it. But, I was grateful I had finished the second dose and was able to complete the rest of my classes. 

I felt fine the first day, but that night the pain began. I slowly became overwhelmed with muscle pains. I felt like a steam roller had flattened me. I woke up in the night freezing and shivering. I did not have a fever. My body has a low normal temp, fevers are VERY uncommon for me. I piled on a thick blanket drank water and went back to sleep. 

 I was off the next day.  I made waffles in the morning but was too week to do anything else. I sat down a few times while making waffles. I thought I might pass out. I felt rough!

I laid on the couch for the rest of the day. It was not a good day. The following day was much better. I was not 100% but could walk the steps without pain in my muscles. I think the effects were spread out over a few days. I am grateful to be back to normal now. 

My experience with the system was good. The people in charge were orderly and kept control. One lady in the Dom Kultura was like a German soldier keeping people in line. I was grateful for the order. I am grateful for the opportunity. Thank you Serbia


The second dose, done and dusted. Waiting to see how Hubby’s second dose of AZ will be.

I am over the Currier and Ives meets COVID winter the part dva

FINALLY spring is arriving. The birds are chirping, blossoms are are blooming, and the chill is dissipating. THANK GOD! Yesterday was divine, I continued painting my barn front sunshine and flowers mural after I taught a few classes. Today is a blustery partly sunny partly grey day. Not as outdoor friendly. I shall stoke the fire and write. Oh and teach.

Lately, the covid restrictions have ramped up despite the well organized vaccinations around Serbia. We will be staying isolated. Living our Currier and Ives meets internet lives. Let me share a bit of what I mean.

Wood Burning Woes

All winter and for the last few years, I have been posting village pics that make people reminiscent of the days of yesteryear. Trust me, often it isn’t as cool as you think. I am longing for homes well insulated and heated not by a romantic fire that I must feed like the plant from Little Shop of Horrors. Feed me Seymore! I am over it!

All winter, I wake to feed the animals and the fires. Upstairs and downstairs I stock the wood supplies and keep the fires going to ensure our bodies stay warm.

It starts out cozy and moves on slowly to monotonous. We are beyond that now, and I am exceeding grateful the warmth and signs of spring’s divine return. Halelujah! Imagine a chorus. ‘Cause that is what’s going on in my mind.

I was just sharing these same thoughts with two other expats that live in villages. The Canadian shared that he had put some logs in the cooking part of the stove to dry out. Dry wood burns better than wet wood and he had seen a neighbor baba do the very same. It is a brilliant idea. But the wood had dried in time and then caught fire. Whoops! He quickly moved them into the wood burning part and aired out his home, thus inviting the cold back in that he was trying to kick out. LOL Ah, we all have these funny, but not funny stories.

Mother Goose doesn’t wear a bonnet here. She has brass knuckles and bears her teeth. Her bite is worse than her honk!

Every week, I make a short trek to the neighbor dairy maid turned baba. She is always wearing the baba uniform. The typical garb is a dark long sleeve shirt, a wool sweater, an ancient skirt paired with an apron, thick black tights, completed with the black rubber slip on shoes.

When I venture over during the day, I am on guard. The neighbors geese have been let out to roam, free range without fences. They are just one of the village terrorist groups. The miniature Mafia dogs up the hill are another. Then there are the little school house security dogs. Both canine crews are short in stature with Napoleon complexes. But lets get back to the geese.

These geese take freedoms with the neighbors yards that are not sufficiently fenced. Ours is one of those poorly fenced. Yesterday, I found a huge goose poop right in front of my door. I am sure that is the furry of a scorned goose. The retribution from being chided harshly with a big stick as I passed by on my way for milk. This is the terrorism I face on my routine walk for milk. The geese gang up on me and harass me as I pass by. They would and HAVE bitten me when my guard was down. It hurts. So, now, I always grab a big stick to scare them off. Sometimes it keeps them running away depending on their mood. Other times it does little to deter their savage need for blood. Seriously, you would think they were carnivores!

The winter’s early sunset makes for a very cold, walk with the phone flashlight lighting my way. Our dog Ginger insists on accompanying me and we set the neighbor dogs to barking as we pass by. The evening post-milking pickup is usually quick and I head home lugging 4 litters of fresh warm milk.

Upon my return, I boil the milk and let it cool until morning. I bottle it and freeze a few liters using only one bottle for immediate use.

The spring has elongated the days and my jaunt to retrieve the milk is now lit by the setting sun and I am grateful, even if the aggravating geese are still at large. I am also thankful that the milk is fresh and it is whole. No additives or preservatives. Straight from Dobrila the cow.

Currier and Ives is not as sweet as it looks my friends. The Golden days of old are only that way in our memories or on canvas. Trust me!

As always, try to find the good and beautiful where you are. Be kind. This will make each day golden for you and others.

New Perspective

Twice this morning, I have had revelations about how things appear and how they are not as they may seem to our eyes. 

 First, it was all about perspective. The cat and the table. Millie was getting ready for school as I folded laundry. She could see our little kitten in front of her as she put on her tights. I could hear the loud Harley Davidson sized purr of the contented kitty cat happy to be inside on a cold morning. I asked where the little calico was. Millie was baffled that I could not see the blissful bathing furball. She could not see that her perspective was different from mine. The cat was right in front of her. For me, the cat was concealed by the coffee table.
For some, the truth can be so plain to see possibly even illuminated. For others, it may be obscured for any number of reasons. Be kind to others and give grace to those who can not see the truth you can. AND Keep in mind that maybe you are blind to some truths Maybe there is a coffee table in from of your eyes. Do not be so critical of others who can see things from another perspective. 

The second was the reawakening of the fire. I had started the fire in the morning. Lack of care had it dwindle down to smoking coals barely giving heat. I added some dry corn cobbs. Moved the wood and added a fresh dry splintered log and left to feed the fire upstairs. When I came down to return to work at the computer, the crackle and snap of the fire had returned.

Remember to feed your fire, and do not doubt the fire in others. Encourage and feed the tiniest embers so that you or they can come to blazing bonfire. Don’t forget to make s’mores! 

Remember to feed your fire, and do not doubt the fire in others. Encourage and feed the tiniest embers so that you or they can come to blazing bonfire. Don’t forget to make s’mores! Celebrate your victories and self improvement with something sweet.

Flat Stanley Stories Part 2 Stanley Starts School in Serbia

Today, Stanley is reminiscing on memories of his first days at school.
From the start Stanley loved his teacher. He calls her Snow White. And if she was one of the Disney Princesses, that would be her! She even has seven dwarfs!! There are 7 students in her school! Coincidence… I don’t thinks so. Just like Snow White she is kind and orderly. Stanley learned the routine quickly and easily.

He made friends immediately. The other children were ecstatic to meet the new student from across the sea. Stanley doesn’t want to brag, but he thinks that Serbian hospitality is the best in the world. The little flat man had packed light and his friends noticed he only had one set of clothes, they got to work and made him a new outfit! How thoughtful they were! Serbians really are the most amazing people.

Stanley made some other flat friends and was thrilled to get to see them dressed in their traditional costumes. He loves the flipped up toes on the shoes!

Here is a picture of Slavica (Slavitsa) and Stanislav, Stanley’s flat comrades. They are into folk dancing and preserving the customs of Serbia’s rich history. They dance the kolo and enjoy showing off the traditional kit.

Stanley misses home from time to time, but this village is so beautiful, he knows he is lucky to have landed in such a comforting place. He loves the food and is gaining weight each day as the meals are so large with formal courses.

The meals start with salads, often from the garden outside. Then homemade soup that is so tasty. Drinks aren’t on the table until the main courses arrives. This has been a bit of a shock to our paperweight boy. But he has learned to get his glass before he sits down to eat with the family.

One meaty course with veggies is followed by another. Being a vegetarian would be a challenge in this part of the world. Here in the village, most people raise their own food. Knowing the chicken that comes to the table is quite and adjustment. For the record, Stanley wouldn’t mind if the attack geese from down the road ended up on someone’s table. They are honking terrorists! Plus they poop everywhere. Rude.

Finally, there is often dessert with coffee served separately. This part is taking some getting used to for him. Stanley likes coffee. Like most of his friends from the United States, he likes to have his coffee with his dessert so he just puts one to the side til the other arrives.

More on the coffee in the next Stanley Story!

Thanks for joining us for the second installment of Stanley stories. See you again soon.