Friday, 18 September 2009

Dear So and So, Bosnian Version: Part IV

The Brits household is off on holiday this week, sunning itself on the Croatian coastline. At least that is the plan. The forecast is for rain and a bit of a cold snap making it a rather less attractive proposition than England.

Sadly this means that we will miss Bajram, the Bosnian version of Eid which marks the end of Ramadan. The whole town is a flutter of talk about which parties shall be attended, and who will be where. I've been to some of these Bajram parties (in a pre-children era) and they are terrific. Everyone joins in, Muslim or not and there is an awful lot of dancing and beer and food and all things good.

Anyway, until you get your real-life postcard which given the ongoing British postal strike means probably never, here are some of the virtual versions, sent from Bosnia.


Dear fellow expats in Tuzla currently on holiday in the States (you know who you are),

When are you coming back? We miss you! I'm not sure we have forgiven you yet for abandoning us all summer. And can you bring peanut butter with you?

Hugs and kisses to you both,

Fraught Mummy


Dear Random Imam,

After the Bosnian Delights and the perfume, I must also thank you for the vast quantities of plums that you have taken to leaving by our front door. Would you be very offended if I was to make them into Plum Vodka?

Yours, hic, oops, silly giggle,


Dear Boys,

Which bit of 'Don't Do That' do you not understand?

Your ever loving but getting increasingly disciplinarian as it is becoming more obvious that noone in this household listens to a word I say mother xx


Dear Bosnian Pedestrians,

Given that you are the bottom of the pile when it comes to priority of road users, how is it that you feel so confident in crossing the road without looking to see if there are any vehicles coming?

Seriously wondering how any of you are still alive,



Dear Dave,

I do appreciate you looking after the boys when I am out and about. Really I do. But, given that you take control of them at about 5.30 which isn't that long before they go to bed and during that time they are having supper, a bath and watching a bit of TV, how is it possible that the house gets so totally and utterly trashed?

Your ever grateful, but curious wife x


Dear Bakers, all bakers, any bakers,

Please don't stop making Lepina just because it is the end of Ramadan. I know that you can get it out of season, but it just isn't the same without those yummy black bits on the top. I don't think I can wait for next year to get my lepina fix!

Yours, scoffing any lepina I can find in preparation for the great lepina fast about to begin,
FM x

Dear Boys,

Which part of 'you will hurt yourself' do you not understand?

Your exasperated mother who is running out of plasters and sympathy for preventable ouch moments. xxxx


Dear Outside Dog,

We are ok for you to make a camp for yourself on our porch as you are, for a stray dog, remarkably well behaved (and now fully deticked and delurgyed). We are happy to keep on giving you food. But if you keep going into our bins and dumping the contents all over the garden we may have to rethink the above.

Don't say you weren't warned,



Dear favourite bakers,

Please reopen soon. You are the only ones that I can rely on to bake zeljanica pita (spinach pie with a sort of feta like cheese in) which is my absolute favourite of all time ever.

Pretty please?



Dear Bosnian Car Importers and Banks,

How difficult can it be? Seriously.

Starting to get quite wound up at how long (and how expensive) a relatively simple and straightforward transaction can be made into a paper marathon, with no end in sight.

Yours, still driving our English registered car round Tuzla,



Dear Boys,

Which part of 'Stop Climbing Onto The Windowsill, Opening The Window And Throwing Your Toys Out!' do you not understand?

Just understand this: It is your fault if your toys break or get lost,

Mummy x


Dear Next Door Neighbour,

The boys are 2 and 4. They will make a lot of noise when they are in the garden. They tend to this during the afternoon, usually around 4pm. This is a whole lot better than your turbo folk music blasting out late at night. So quit complaining and shut your window if you don't want to hear them.

Yours, with a you got a problem with that? attitude,


PS - your white suit and shoes they you so love? Not a good look.


Dear Bosnian teenage boys,

Scooting around with your helmet draped over your handlebars doesn't look cool. We know that your mother made you take your helmet. Why don't you just wear it? You never know, it might actually save your life.




Dear Boys,

You are never to buy yourself a scooter. Or motorbike. And you are ALWAYS to wear your helmets, especially when I make you take them with you.

It's because I love you,

Hugging and kissing you and holding you tight, and never ever letting you buy a motorbike (although you will pay about as much attention to that statement as you do to all my other instructions - sigh).



Dear Blogger,

What is this thing with the formatting? If I want lots of spaces between my lines, I'll put them there myself.

Fed up with having to reformat my posts for no good reason,


As ever, I could go on. And on and on. But, that is enough for now. There are bags to be packed, packed lunches to be made and armbands to be found. Have a great week.

If you fancy a writing a Dear So and So post of your own, make sure to head over to Kat's at 3 Bedroom Bungalow and sign up so other fans of the genre can read you too.


PS - for those that haven't already spotted it, the latest Best of British Mummy Bloggers carnival is up: Head on over to New Mummy to read 42 posts covering the full range of parenting moments.


Muddling Along Mummy said...

Have a super time whilst you're away and hurry back to us

I'm glad its not just mine that ignores me ...

p.s. no chance of a picture of white suit man ???

Catharine Withenay said...

Love the letters - identify with so, so much.

Don't just blame Bosnians about cars, though. We were told in April that we would have ours in two weeks. Allegedly (no breath being held) it is being delivered this morning. British (and NHS!) bureaucracy and organisation at its best.

Have a lovely holiday!

Half Mum Half Biscuit said...

Have a lovely time.

Autumn sunshine here - hope you get some too.

Mamma Po said...

Fab fab fab - as ever. Have a wonderful holiday - am so envious of you enjoying the Croatian coastline (in sun or rain!), which still rates as my best holiday experience EVER. Look forward to hearing all about it. Xxx

Kat said...

Plum vodka! *puts on list of things to do*

Very Bored Housewife said...

Fab as always. Plum vodka sounds delish!

Michelloui said...

Hehehehe! I think thisis the best Dear So and So Ive read in ages! Wishing there's sun for you... (sending warm vibes!) x

Alice said...

that was a very good read ... laughing out loud here!

Plum vodka sounds diiiiivvviiiinnnneee!

Mummy said...

Just in case, there is a bakery on Mare Street in Hackney that makes zeljanica pita.

nappy valley girl said...

Fab postcards, yet again.

Yes what is it with that formatting thing? V. annoying.

Saying ' you will hurt yourself' to my boys usually just eggs them on even more... if it's dangerous, it must be fun, right?

Elise said...

Have a lovely time !

Maternal Tales said...

Oh I do love these. You're really so very clever! Yes, agree with the Daddy one trashing the house - always, always. Why??? And yes to the blogger one too - ooh it frustrates me. Anyway, hope you've had great hols. Award for you over at mine xx

Ju said...

Hello, I just found your fantastic blog and will be joining in from now on. Great read. Thanks.

Mwa said...

I think there's something in the September air that makes "don't do that" not work.

Kathryn said...

Have a great holiday and don't forget to send some postcards!!!

ck said...

I love these posts...especially "Which part of 'you will hurt yourself' do you not understand?"

I can't even begin to express how many times I've said (and thought) this!

Muddling Along Mummy said...

p.s. Not sure if I've mentioned I love your blog - have tagged you over at mine just in case !

The Woman who Can said...

You had me at plum vodka, then you described the food as well. I'm on my way to your house, don't say I didn't tell you.

The wife of bold said...

mmm plum Vodka that sounds delicious! Award for you at mine x

Victoria said...

I love your Dear So and So posts. My husband trashes the house too. He does breakfast every day, which I deeply appreciate, but for God's sake, you wouldn't think it was so difficult to put a few bowls in the dishwasher. As for the state of the floor...

Have a great holiday, I hope the sun shines for you.

A Modern Mother said...

Have a great holiday (and I'll send you some PB)

Saba said...

Hello There,I've found your blog through had been in Sarajevo 3 years ago for 3 month and last winter for 1 month again.your posts about bosna make me feel pleasant while I whish to be there again!
I have some questions about living there,and establishing a company(d.o.o)like what you have done.If you can help me please write me :
thanks in advance and knid regards

Paradise Lost In Translation said...

Being in ALbania I am with you on the pedestrian question, the outside dog, & the helmetless motorbikers, to which I would add "Why do you insist on riding with yr 6mth,12 mth, 3 yr old precious child on a bike at all, let alone with no helmet for any of you, & THEN weave in & out of traffic, rid ethe wrong way up streets & shoot out of side rds without looking, like you had 9 lives or even a collective death wish?"

clareybabble said...

If you do make plum vodka, can you send me some please?? xx
P.S. Enjoy your hols!

Brit in Bosnia / Fraught Mummy said...

MAM - I'll keep my camera on standby. He appeared this morning, in his white trousers and with a bright pink shirt AND MATCHING SHOES! Made my morning.

CW - back from holiday, back to the car import saga. The car is here, it is trying to register it that is the problem. Yawn!

HMHB - love Britain in the Autumn sun. Enjoy!

MP - was thinking of you sailing around the coast. You should come again. I'm going to write a post about travelling in Croatia with kids, really much easier than you might think! Hope your housebuying dilemma is being sorted! x

Kat - do put it on the list. I have 2 more months to wait, but it is looking goood.

VBH - can't wait to try it

Michelle - the warm vibes worked, a lot of sun was there!

Alice - it is looking pretty good. I'll let you know how it goes in Nov when we can drink it.

Brit in Bosnia / Fraught Mummy said...

Mummy - really! I am so excited about that. I shall make a special trip to East London on my return.

NVG - what is it with boys? when will they learn that their mother is RIGHT!

Elise - thanks!

MT - thanks. And the house trashing gets me every time.

Ju - glad you like it! Welcome back any time.

Mwa - tragically, don't do that doesn't ever work in my house, whatever the month.

Kathryn - Croatia to Italy, not that far really!

ck - at what point do we let them just hurt themselves to understand that Mummy is RIGHT?

MAM - thanks for the tag.

WWC - Plum vodka for everyone come November!

WoB - Thanks. Looks like I'll be selling it.

Victoria - what is it with them? Does make me go GRRRR!

MM - THanks!

Saba - I sent you an email, but do get in touch with any questions about living here, setting up a company, whatever.

Paradise - outside dog is in deep disgrace having trashed the front of the house whilst we were away. I think Albania and Bosnia sound pretty similar... you still got good weather down there?

CB - vodka is simmered, plummed and bottled. Now we just need to wait for November.