Monday, 22 February 2010

Wintertime picnics

Tuzla isn't a big city. It is quite easy to get out of the urban sprawl and up into the hills for some lovely walks and amazing views. One of our favourite spots is up behind the Skver (which is confusingly a roundabout, the laws of which will be a topic for a whole post of its own). We follow the road up, past the houses onto the ridge of a hill. Up here there are more houses are to be found, but these are of the weekend variety. A place where those from Tuzla can come to grow orchards and tend to their vegetables. The houses can be amazing, in fact one is so lovely that I am almost consumed with jealousy everytime I see it. Some are more simple, but all have that most important of things, a place to barbeque (or rostilj). The getting together of lots of people to eat large quantities of meat and drink large quanitities of beer and sljivavica (plum brandy to the uninitiated amongst you) before singing songs about true loves that have abandoned you are a major part of the Bosnian culture.

We usually park the car where the paved road finishes and carry on on foot up a path that always looks English to me. Right at the top, on the edge of a ridge someone has put an old table and benches, together with a fire and a pot for brewing coffee. In the summer it is a lovely spot, with 360 views. The owner has recently planted an orchard but no one seems to mind if you stop there for a bit of a picnic.

We were up there the other day, in the snow.

Don't you just love the coffee pot? I'd love to have the confidence to come up here, start a fire and actually brew myself a cuppa, but I'm far too English for that. Instead, we'll just carry on with our impromptu picnics whenever we get up here and just sit back and enjoy the view.


TheMadHouse said...

I love the though of making a cup of tea or a pot of coffee, so refined!!

Kate said...

Weather hotting up here now. Am jealous of your snow. Might take a while to get the fire going for the coffee though!

Diney said...

I fear the coffee pot would be nicked if it was left in our country! What a great idea though.

Michelloui said...

I love your description of the BBQs! It made me wish for a get together like that...apart from the songs, perhaps.

The coffee pot reminds me of old camp coffee pots, I love it! I dont blame you for 'being English; I probably would be the same. And yet, I can understand the temptation at the same time.

Teacher Mommy said...

We have been inundated (again) with snow over here, and I'm looking longingly at that coffee pot because I was looking forward to my coffee from the coffee stand dammit and now I might have to actually fend for myself because we have another snow day. I'm not happy about this one, though.

And your boy is adorable. But I assume you already knew that. :)

London City Mum said...

Reminds me of childhood in Switzerland when we went on mid-winter picnics in the snow.

Now I have Other Half who just barbeques all year round, whatever the weather, even on Xmas day.

But at least on home premises.


Heather said...

they do a lot of this making fires and boiling coffee, cooking sausages stuff out here too. took me ages to find the confidence to go along and do it too.

Babies who brunch said...

It sounds like like in Georgia. No one could go anywhere without rustling up some shashlik on an impromptu fire. (We used to live in Tbilisi.) Fabulous.

nappy valley girl said...

Looks beautiful, and the mountain hut with picnic table reminds me of places I've been to in Norway.

Quite a few of our neighbours here seem to BBQ in midwinter outside their back doors - I think they are just so enamoured of their grills that they can't bear not to use them!

Anonymous said...

Yes, i do love the coffee pot. And I'm glad you have all that snow too!!

CJ xx

Calif Lorna said...

We spent a fantastic afternoon with some friends in Sweden helping them pick their Christmas tree. We all went out into a forest, lit a fire, cooked sausages then went off looking for a tree. It was wonderful, an experience I'll never forget.

Picnics in the snow are just brilliant. Lovely photo.

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WeDoAdventure said...

What a great hat - I have one quite similar!

(I'm just writing a post on almost getting stuck up a snowy mountain!)

Footballers Knees said...

Wow, looks idyllic. I want to try some of that plum brandy!

Catharine Withenay said...

Iced tea? Frappachino?

Brave picnicking!

Lady Mama said...

Looks wonderful!

Brit in Bosnia / Fraught Mummy said...

MH - isn't it just?

Kate - I'll swop a bit of hot weather for slush yuck in a jiffy!

Diney - We should start a campaign for more random coffee pots around and about.

Michelleoui - the songs are inevitable, always revelling in lost love. Something to do with the Balkans I think.

TM - you've been deprived of coffee. But that counts as a form of torture no?

LCM - does that mean you get to stay nice and warm and toasty whilst the food is being cooked?

Heather - must be a cold weather thing.

BwB - Does sound wonderful.

NVG - Norway must have been lovely.

Brit in Bosnia / Fraught Mummy said...

CJ - this photo was taken before the last big dump of snow. Thankfully it has all now melted, I've had enough snow for this year, truely.

CalifLorna - thanks!

Elyse - er, thanks?

WDA - we have the scarf to go with it, but it was on the snow man at the time.

FK - I can send you some. We have vats of the stuff. All authentically home brewed. We use it to get ticks off the dog!

CW - Ooo, a frappachino would be nice. Mmm.

LM - thanks.

manicmum said...

Snow anywhere but London always looks so romantic and inviting. No slush, no hidden dog turds or yellow patches! Enjoy! XX

Brit in Bosnia / Fraught Mummy said...

Manic Mum - plenty of all three, in fact more than you'd find in England, especially the dog poo aspect. There are so many strays here, it wouldn't make any difference if everyone picked up poos. Which might be why they don't. Anyway, sorry to disillusion you! Maybe I should just keep to looking at the pictures.

A Modern Mother said...

LOVE the coffee pot. That is my kind of place.

Paradise Lost In Translation said...

Love the coffee pot! Albania hasn't advanced to picnic tables, benches to admire the view, let alone coffee pots. We too get into the hills v quickly from our house. the rds quickly becoem mud & the houses becoem more dilapidated & they all have chickens, goats & dogs roamong around, plus vines & their own veg of course. On some rds up ino tthe hills, bu tno ttoo far, you get the really swanky ove rthe top (I'm sorry but bad taste) Mafia villas. You know wrought iron gates, fountains, pillars, lions heads at the gates (not horses heads;o) )etc. Albania doesn't really do houses to be envious of.....! The views are great tho..

Brit in Bosnia / Fraught Mummy said...

MM - it's great isn't it! Keep looking out to see if I can see one to buy, but haven't found it yet.

Paradise - I know the over the top houses too well too. But there are the occasional spectacularly lovely houses as well. Which gives me hope.

Metropolitan Mum said...

Wow. Absolutely beautiful. I miss a little bit of winter. I am being eaten by mosquitos, and I developed a sun allergy recently. Time to go home :)

Brit in Bosnia / Fraught Mummy said...

MM - I don't think I'm feeling that sorry for you in the Caribbean ;-)

Lynn said...

My goodness, you're brave for even attempting to eat outside in the snow with toddlers! If I had a modicum of your gumption ... well, things would be different around here.

Brit in Bosnia / Fraught Mummy said...

Lynn - desperate measures call for desperate action. Given the choice I'd be living somewhere HOT!

Anonymous said...

I agree with you