VOLUNTEER’S BLOG – January 2020
This month was a really short one for us as we all went home for Christmas and New Year holidays.
Lana was the first one to come back again. She went to an acoustic concert in “Crni Bombarder” which she really liked. “Crni bombarder” is a local Rock ‘n´ Roll bar here in Brcko we all like to visit on Friday nights or for coffee in the afternoon. Then it was Lydia’s turn. Adin and Lana drove to Tuzla by car and picked her up at the airport. They also used this opportunity to have a look at the city and eat some pizza in a store called “Mozaik”. Hannah’s journey was the longest one as she travelled by train to Zagreb and spent there the next day and night to visit some of the volunteers she met on her on-arrival-seminar.
On Sunday we were all reunited and shared our experiences from home. We all felt similar. Even though it was a great reunion with our family and friends we did miss some of the freedom and independence we have here. At home, we had to adapt to the daily routines of our family so we couldn’t just go out, eat or wash our clothes whenever we wanted to. Still, it was nice to have a change of environment and to celebrate with our loved ones so we could start with new energy when we came back.
It is crazy how fast you get used to your routine again. A few days later it was as if we have never been away.
On Thursdays, we usually go to Samba which is a nice break to just sink into the rhythm and don’t think about much else than to remember the rhythm you have to play on your instrument. Mostly we play the drums but sometimes there´s also someone playing the bass guitar.
Yes, we were happy to be back in our shared house but it also comes with responsibility. A part of that is the cleaning and washing the dishes. We are all used to just put our dishes in the dishwasher. As a creative and effective way to divide this daily task between us, we made a dishwashing clock with our names on it. Each time someone washed the dishes she would afterwards just put the hand of the clock to the next name. It may sound ridiculous but it does work. Our next experience in the kitchen was baking bread. Let’s just say it isn’t as easy as it looks but we managed not to burn the kitchen. We realised that we got more motivated to try our cooking skills out and invent some meals on our own.
On sunny days we love to get some food in our break and just sit on a bench and enjoy the sunshine. Unfortunately, that was a rare case here. The days were mostly grey/foggy and we discovered how much energy and good mood a sunny day could give us. Mostly we go to “Baron” grill where you can buy really tasty and fresh burgers, eat a ‘Sirnica’ (cheese pie) from “Fresh” or “Nymex” or we eat pancakes at “Plazmica”. Adin and Boris introduced us to the local dish ‘Sarma’ which is made out of rice, cabbage and meat.
For two weeks Alex Knot, who is working for the American organization “Omprakash” that works together with Svitac (Firefly Bosnia), visited Svitac (Firefly Bosnia). In the morning she helped us a lot with our small children and in the evening and on the weekends we showed her some of our favourite places to go to in town. We ate ‘ćevapi’ together and went to get coffee at the “coffee shop” where you can get probably the fanciest coffee in town.
Almira, a local volunteer who worked with us, also showed us the coffee place “Monami”. It is really cosy with its oriental style and most certainly a place to visit more often.
A winter attraction here is the ice-skating place outside. Merima, another local volunteer, took us and Alex there and it really was a great afternoon. We all haven’t been skating for a long time and after the first shaky steps, we got more confident and had a lot of fun.
Thank you for reading! The weather forecast says that it will be snowing next month and also we have some cool more projects planned, so stay tuned for February´s blog entry!
Lana, Lydia and Hannah, Svitac’s (Firefly Bosnia’s) international volunteers