There are some photo’s of our trip at the bottom of my photo page.
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To set the scene today’s adventure took place in two different houses within a few hundred metres of each other in the middle of Montenegrin countryside. The first house belonged to the granddad who died on Sunday whose ceremonies were the subject of my previous blog. It is here that the adventure began as Rada, her father, her uncle, Anya and myself rumbled up the track to present ourselves at the ‘Third Morning’ breakfast. This being the third morning of mourning…
The house was packed and I found myself inserted on a table that would have comfortably seated twelve but had nineteen Montenegrin countryfolk of varying descriptions in attendance. My immediate concern was the safety of my derrière. My position at the feast happened to be at the joining of two benches. There was little room for manoeuvre and with every upping or downing of my eight comrades on either bench there occurred an event not too dissimilar to the movement of two great tectonic plates at the happening of an earthquake. My major worry was which part of my backside I should position over the ‘crack’ or lack thereof. If I were to choose either of my fleshy cheeks then there was a 99% chance that I would receive, by the end of the meal, at least one nasty pinch shaped blemish. The alternative was to position my delicate midline above the aforementioned ‘crack’. The benefit being this area is elevated at least a centimetre higher than the more cushioned region and therefore far less likely to be tweaked. The shortcoming of this choice was that, should the tremor between the benches be severe then this most fragile exit point of my digestive system may suffer irreparable damage.
Nevertheless, I gambled on the latter and survived the meal intact. Not that it gave much immediate profit to my lavatorial experiences as there was no way I was going to indulge the local toilets to a sitting session as they are literally nothing more than a hole in the ground with a small rudimentary shed-like covering and definite lack of paper and definite surplus of insect life both harmless and not so harmless.
Shortly after the banquet, which it was, Anya and myself were able to make our excuses and walk over to the second house which belongs to Rada’s family. It is a basic but comfortable and warm building and I soon found myself nodding a little as Anya innocently coloured on the floor. You can imagine my surprise when I awoke some time later to find the room empty. A quick survey of the house and it was obvious that my daughter was not in the vicinity. I didn’t want to raise a panic because Montenegrins have an expressively spirited temperament at the least provoking of times. So I wandered back up to the original house in what I hoped looked like a post-feast saunter eagerly keeping an eye out for my one and only offspring. She was not among the revellers as I had hoped. But not wishing to raise you the devoted reader to too much of an anti-climax I did find her with her mother in the kitchen area shortly after. This was good as I did have visions of her being harassed by some giant toilet occupying killer ant.
This is turning into a hefty volume so I will sign off shortly. I would just like to say on a serious note that I find days like these when surrounded for hours on end with non-English speakers really difficult and tedious unless constantly supplied by food and drink. Depending on the relative we are with they are extremely stressful for Rada too. So please, if you pray, could you pray for the rest of our time here that it would be purposeful, calm and relaxing. And also that Rada and I will get time to ourselves.