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Friday, April 21, 2006

Seven, Six, Five, Four, Three, Two, One

"One country, with two alphabets, three religions, four main languages, five nationalities, six republics, and it was bordered by seven countries."

The first thing I remember learning about the Former Republic of Yugoslavia during pre-deployment training for Bosnia.

And I'd thought the situation in Northern Ireland had been complicated.


Blogger FOUR DINNERS said...

Went to Yugoslavia on holiday as a kid. Loved it. Got a pen friend from that holiday. We wrote each other 4 times a year from 11 years old up to the war. He came to my wedding with his wife. He got killed 3rd day in. His dad wrote to tell me. Bloody sad thing to happen to such a beautiful country. His dad had very little English. Dunno who helped him write - good that he did - his letter just said "Son dead shit happens" Weirdist letter I've ever got.

8:16 pm  
Blogger Universal Soldier said...

Four Dinners - there's a saying in Bosnia "Beautiful country, ugly people", I don't really agree because I found lovely friendly people in all of the ethnic groups - I don't think they understand why they do it to each other.

8:33 pm  
Blogger d34dpuppy said...

its a habit us thay been doin it like 1200 years

3:00 am  
Blogger Theblonde said...

Aaaah yes Yugoslavia. Whilst cruising in the Med we actually got deported from this country.....for taking a photo of a beautiful sail training a secret harbour full of gun boats and subs..We were assessed to be spies, kept under armed guard whilst my father was interrogated for 3 days, ordered to leave within a week and not come back for 5 years..'We' consisted of parents and 3 kids under 6 on a 32' boat!

9:27 am  
Blogger Old Bar Man said...

The British Empire couldn't have done it better, partition a country, cuase it to have civil war, thus not being a threat to anyone else.

My Grandparents went on holiday to Croatia before it all kicked off, said what a beautiful country it is.

10:55 am  
Blogger PI said...

My parents used to go there a lot and loved the beauty and found the people very poor and really friendly.
What about the cuisine?

4:35 pm  
Blogger Universal Soldier said...

D34D - I think your right - it's just ingrained in them.

TheBlonde - that definitely beats any of my stories - any chance of slightly longer version of the story on your blog?

OldBarMan - absolutely fantastic scenery in places.

PI - the cuisine will come up a few times in the next couple of months.

4:50 pm  
Blogger Katy Newton said...

Annoyed. Bloglines did not tell me you had updated. But I will be revenged upon them. Oh yes.

11:31 pm  
Blogger Universal Soldier said...

Katy - never really liked Bloglines, I use Google Reader - and then just to be on the safe side I check every blog manually on a daily basis (but it's ok I'm not addicted or anything).

9:11 am  
Blogger Just Jane said...

Croatia is beautiful alright. But I was a bit taken aback when I realised that in Dubrovnik we were only 10 kilometres away from Bosnia.

Am so glad you are going to be talking about this area for a while cos there is so much I want to learn about it having visited there very recently, and being really keen to go again.

3:45 pm  
Anonymous David Duff said...

I know everyone raves about Dubrovnik but I recommend Porec, a small port-town further north in Ilyria. Good tourist-type hotels *outside* the old town but within strolling distance - or a regular toy-sized tram runs up and down the long promenade to collect the lame or the lazy. The old town is virtually untouched, narrow cobbled streets and with every type of architecture from the last 1000 years - *excluding* the last 100 years! Best of all, there is a daily (I think) fast ferry across to Venice. According to the experts, if you are making your first visit to Venice you should always contrive to arrive by sea. For once the experts are right! All the superlatives have been over-used in describing the approach into Venice via the Grand Lagoon. I should add that because Porec is so far north and because 99% of the population is Catholic, they were virtually untouched by the war. We had a double-centre holiday, consisting of one week in Croatia and then a coach ride north into Slovenia which, for those who like walking, mountains, forrests, lakes, waterfalls, is just one of the most beautiful countries in Europe.

Oh God, sorry, I'm 'Boring for Britain' again - any minute now I'll offer to show you my holiday snaps!

8:21 am  
Anonymous RAF Bod said...

The war in FYR? I can hardly remember it. While the Army were playing about in blue berets and white tanks we, the fly boys, were fighting the real war in Italy. Soft beds, hotels, days on the beaches, wine, pizza's, wine, more wine. Who says war is hell?
Seriously, much respect to the Army, there but for the grace of god etc.

12:20 pm  
Blogger Papa Ray said...

Well enjoy it while you can, but like I said before, look forward to much climbing and IEDs in Afghanistan

Of course, there is a coming build up of UN forces, in the Sudan. Maybe you Brits will have a hand in that tottle-do also.

3:58 pm  

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