Wednesday, March 31, 2010

ABC WEDNESDAY -'K' is for 'kooky'

Spring is here and the weather is warmer, on and off, anyway. This photo was taken on an 'on' day, along the Sava River, where I happened upon this fisherman. I've always wanted to wear a hat like this....and this fellow had the nerve. A very practical and 'kooky' solution to sun protection.

See what others have done with the letter K by checking out ABC WEDNESDAY.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Happy Birthday, Vincent van Gogh...

...and to the little boy on the right, who shares a birthday with him! This is my 3rd grade English as an Additional Language class (the 3rd grade is bigger; these are just the kids who come to me.) Their current theme unit is on 'expression,' and what better way than to learn about van Gogh, who expressed himself so well through his paintings? I invited a stand-in for Vincent, who would have been 147 today. The little doll is part of a series called Little Thinkers that you can read about by clicking on that link. They're fun gifts...and Vincent has a removable ear...

Monday, March 29, 2010

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Tow, tow, tow your car....

Don't park where you're not supposed to. I am actually pleased that Belgrade is stepping up with removal and ticketing of illegally parked cars. It's quite costly though, for the thoughtless driver. Having your car released can cost around 12,000 dinars or about $150.00, which is quite a chunk out of someone's local salary. The fellow on the left is having his car written up, but he may get out of paying a towing fee, unlike the unfortunate Audi's owner, who is nowhere in sight.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

That empty feeling...

The streets below Branko's Bridge were once quite attractive, and I hope their allure will be restored. I was pleasantly surprised to see this 'empty' building; only the facade remains. In other cities in Europe, it's a fairly common practice to restore/renovate old buildings inside and keep the facade. Here, that's usually not so, but it looks like someone has that intention for this old building.

Friday, March 26, 2010

SKYWATCH--Fingernail Moon

A hand-held shot, hence the blur. When the moon is like this, just a sliver, I call it a 'fingernail' moon, and wonder if anyone else does.

See other moons, slivers, fingernails, and skies at SKYWATCH.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Life at the top

Time to 'fess up. Who hasn't dreamed of living in a penthouse, surrounded by famous names?
Whoever lives in this rooftop apartment in a building adjacent to Branko's Bridge has quite a few famous names for neighbors. At least they're quiet.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

ABC Wednesday 'J' is for 'Jagged'

While walking in Zemun (ZAY-moon), a nearby municipality of Belgrade, I came upon this old door with several glass panes. Actually, there had been several glass panes, but the others were completely gone, and all that remained of this one was some jagged, very old glass. I liked shapes and textures, so I took a photo for you to see, too.

Today is also the 11th anniversary of the NATO bombing of Serbia, which I showed you last year. Many windows were shattered at that time.

See other J's on ABC WEDNESDAY.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Not just Yugos on the street...

Here's a car you don't see every day, or at least I don't. This Rolls Royce, with a Belgrade license plate, made quite a few heads turn (and my camera click) as it eased its way down a very busy boulevard. Its tinted windows prevented me from seeing who was in there, but whoever it was wasn't interested in driving over to the McDonald's across the street.
Fellow blogger at Fort Lauderdale Daily Photo and I have been ribbing each other about the Yugo automobile. I think that's a red Yugo that you can see the rear of on the right side of the photo, and a while ago, I posted a Yugo here.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Soaking up some rays

Hurrah! Spring arrived like clockwork (BTW, we haven't set out clocks ahead yet, though...) and the last few days have been gorgeous. People have been out and around all weekend, walking by the river, walking their dogs, playing ball, sitting in cafes, and soaking up the rays. Even these mannequins were tired of modeling indoors at Belgrade's Chinese market, and slipped out to soak up a few rays. Better get that sunblock.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Were they swans?

Hmmm...maybe those birds you saw last Friday were swans, not crows or geese. One seems to have landed on this chair beside a dumpster.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

The Eternal Flame(s)

Here is a shot of The Eternal Flame that you can read about here and here. In this photo I took three days ago, you see the tip of the tower reflected in a puddle created by recently melted snow. The days since there have been very surprise; it's officially spring today! Hurrah! Where's the color??

This post is part of Newtown Daily Photo's Reflection Weekend.

Friday, March 19, 2010

SKYWATCH- Birds in flight

Not an original title, but that's just what this is. At first I thought the birds were crows, but they're rather large, so I think they may be gulls. I used my 200mm on this shot, so I can't be sure.

See what others have posted on SKYWATCH.

P.S. Why is my comment box not showing up? Help. Maybe it's a glitch on Blogger....

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Nikola Tesla

This statue stands (or sits!) outside the Faculty of Engineering in Belgrade. Nikola Tesla
(1856-1943) was an inventor and a mechanical and electrical engineer, one of the most important contributors to the birth of commercial electricity. Tesla made many revolutionary developments in the field of electromagnetism in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and his patents and theoretical work formed the basis of modern alternating current electric power systems, which he helped bring about the Second Industrial Revolution.
Born an ethnic Serb in the village of Smiljan, in what is now Croatia, he was a subject of the Austrian Empire by birth (since Croatia was then part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire) and later became an American citizen. During his many years of work in the United States, Tesla's fame was widespread, but because of his eccentric personality and his seemingly unbelievable and often bizarre claims about possible scientific and technological developments, Tesla was regarded as a mad scientist. References to Tesla were made in such films as The Prestige and The Bucket List. In the latter, actor Morgan Freeman mentions that it was not really Marconi who invented the radio. Indeed, the the U.S. Supreme Court overturned most of Marconi’s patents in light of the previous work of Nikola Tesla, Oliver Lodge, and John Stone from which Marconi’s patent’s were based.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

ABC Wednesday-- 'I' is for 'Internationally intermingled'

Nope, no blankets for sale! Is that what you thought? So did I at first, when I saw this sign on on a wall of Hotel Jugoslavija that you can read somewhat outdated information about right here. I'd just walked passed another sign on a floating restaurant that read 'Fine Dinning,' so I figured the same poor speller made this sign for 'blankets' and forgot the 'l'.

Not so. 'Premier Halls,' a Belgrade firm using an English name, is advertising 'banket sale' (in Serbian) or 'banquet rooms.' A little confusing at first....

See what others have posted today on ABC WEDNESDAY.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Little Rista is Missing

I see a lot of these posters for lost dogs. This one says little Rista, a miniature pinscher, was hit by a car, got scared, and ran off. He had no collar, and most people here don't know that some dogs may have microchips with their i.d. embedded. It's required by law now and low-cost microchipping is available, but many owners don't have their dog chipped, for whatever reason.

I was sort of tempted to call and see if someone had returned him, but if they hadn't, I'd end up making the owner feel worse.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Whittling away the hours....

Meet Stevo Radelic, a Serbian refugee who has been living just outside of Belgrade now ever since he lost his home in Croatia at the beginning of Yugoslavia's break-up. He's made a new life for himself, although a difficult one, creating works of art from pieces of oak. Some wood he finds himself; other times clients bring him a pieces to turn into an artwork. He often comes to town on special days (here he had come for International Women's Day on March 8th) to try to sell what he's made. Prices range according to size and amount of work. The piece on the right, for example, costs 50 euros.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

"Yankee" is two!

Today I celebrate my second blog anniversary. Like last year's post, I'm giving you a blast-from-the-past. The above is a photo also taken in 1973 (so was last year's) shortly after I bought my first camera when I lived in Paris. That summer I returned to Los Angeles where my parents were living at the time, and in downtown L.A. on Pershing Square I captured this scene. It makes me think of what Henri Cartier-Bresson said about grabbing 'the decisive moment,' for I was using an old 135mm lens that I really had to fiddle with (but didn't, seeing as how all I had time for was a quick focus). That's why it's overexposed. Anyway, this photo is one of my favorites.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Help! I'm trapped under the ice!

I couldn't resist this 'face' under a frozen puddle I saw the other day. The bubbles look like two eyes.... Come to think of it, I hope there WASN'T something under there....

This post goes out to Daryl of Out and About in New York, who posted a similar shot the other day. Click on her link above and see another pair of eyes.

Today I decided to join Monochrome Weekend. Check it out.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Snow cupcakes!

Well, guess what the weather is...again. I decided to take advantage of the snow to make my friend Marianne in NYC some cupcakes for her birthday. Lo-cal for sure.

Here's to you, Marianne, on your birthday!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Theme Day - The Tenin Technique

It's still darn cold out there and I couldn't relish lying on the sidewalk or muddy I opted for a Bibi at Home shot. A little fuzzy, but she kept moving...

Thanks to Eric Tenin of Paris Daily Photo for getting me blogging. I found his blog in early 2008 while looking for a good site to send my friend in NYC for her upcoming trip to Paris.

I'll be celebrating my own anniversary (the second!) on March 14th, so check back!

Click here to view thumbnails for all participants

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

ABC Wednesday "H" is for "High, high heels!"

I'm really amazed by some shoes nowadays and wonder if I ever would have succombed to fashion to buy a pair with such high heels. They seem like a twisted ankle just waiting to happen.

See what others have posted for ABC Wednesday.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

And the temperature is....

...minus three Celsius! That's what it really was this morning when I got up. I took this photo last Sunday from Branko's Bridge that I've featured several times. The Sava and Danube Rivers are currently very high, due to melting snow, and in this photo you can see what is actually a modern-shaped cement bench on the quay, part of which is submerged. The improvised walkway behind it leads to one of Belgrade's floating restaurants. Where you now see water you would normally find a grassy area that extends to the sidewalk next to the river.

Monday, March 8, 2010

International Women's Day

International Women's Day is marked on March 8th every year. It started as a Socialist political event, and then blended into the culture of many countries. In some countries' celebrations like here in Serbia, the political aspect has faded and the holiday has become occasion for men and children to express their love to the women around them, similar to Mother's Day or Valentine's Day.

Women come in all shapes and sizes and ages! The above ladies are just a sample.
If you'd like to read more about IWD, click here.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

S.O.S. Market

A chain of S.O.S. Markets opened about a year ago in Belgrade, with the intention of helping citizens with low incomes to save money on groceries. There are several of them around town. This one, with its "S.O.S. Market" sign in Cyrillic, stands beside a green market downtown, next to a 'Pekara" (bakery), whose sign is also in Cyrillic.

If you read Serbian, you can find out more about S.O.S. Markets right here.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Message in a bottle?

I don't know if there was a message in this bottle, but doubt it, since it appears empty. This green wine bottle floats on the quay on the Sava River in New Belgrade. Recent rains and melting snow have made the water levels rise and cover part of the sidewalk.

This post is for Newtown Daily Photo's Reflection Weekend. Hop over and have a look!

Friday, March 5, 2010

SKYWATCH FRIDAY =My moon and...?

Well, when I uploaded this photo, it came as a surprise to me. First of all, the moon was photographed with my new 70-300mm VR lens that I was trying out. It is a hand-held shot, obviously taken at night. Instead of making minor adjustments with Photoshop on my big computer, I was using my little ASUS computer using GIMP, an image manipulation that my Linux-operating ASUS uses. All this while watching a bit of TV. I hardly ever use GIMP, so I think what happened is that when I adjusted one of the filters for light or dark, somehow that mysterious 'spaceship' light got thrown in. I must have inadvertently clicked on something else, too. I only saw it when I uploaded the photo to my blog, but I left it, since I kind of like it, even if it isn't natural....unless it really IS a spaceship.

See if anyone else has accidentally goofed their post for SKYWATCH FRIDAY.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Parking ticket

The City of Belgrade is becoming more strict in regards to illegal parking. Here a policeman is writing a ticket for a vehicle parked on the sidewalk just out of the photo to the left. In the background you can see some taller monuments in Belgrade's Jewish Cemetery that you can read more about right here.

This is a special post for BSquared at Fort Lauderdale Daily Photo. He and I have been exchanging 'Yugo' comments!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

ABC Wednesday 'G' is for 'Go, Greenie!'

It's fairly rare to see a Deux-Chevaux model like this green and white one, even in France anymore. This one has the little half-windows that you can stick your arm out of like this fellow did. I was unable to see if the doors open 'backwards,' i.e. the hinges would be where the door handles usually are on other cars. This car is really well taken care of, and quite peppy. I love Deux-Chevaux.

And hey! Look at the insignia on the rear of the Peugeot! Save for a crown on his head, it looks just like my beer bottle lion from yesterday!

See what others have posted on ABC WEDNESDAY.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

The stalker

What was behind Nikola Pasic the other day? As some readers guessed, it was a very large inflatable, newly-designed bottle of Lav (lion) beer which you can see right here. In this photo you can see the old brown bottle and label, for try as I might, I couldn't find the new green bottle in the stores yet. Murphy's Law will have it that I will find it tomorrow, but in the meantime, just check the 'right here' link above! I went back yesterday to see if the great big bottle was still there, but alas, it had wandered off.

On the double-towered building in the background, you can just make out an advertisement for another Serbian beer, Jelen (stag).

Monday, March 1, 2010

Theme Day--Passageways

This is a passageway in downtown Belgrade that leads from the Zeleni Venac market under a major street with several exits. This passageway is usually jam-packed with what I call 'pack and run' sellers, who carry their merchandise in large bags and display it on cardboard boxes. They're always on the alert for the police, and once I was caught in the midst of a stampede of exiting sellers. This photo was taken on a rainy day, which you can probably guess at by the wet floor where people have walked, and I imagine the sellers thought business wouldn't be good.

But this street musician remains hopeful.

Click here to view thumbnails for all participants

SKYWATCH AND REFLECTION--St. Mark's Cathedral in the Television Building

 This post is a double-header, since I am using this photo for  SKYWATCH  and for James'  WEEKEND REFLECTIONS. Here we see the reflectio...