Hm? What can I tell you about my neighborhood!?
Well first of all it’s in the new part of Belgrade – New Belgrade.
New Belgrade is consisted of many parts so called ‘blocks’ and those blocks have their number. There are 72 blocks, and, for example, I live in the block 62. Blocks, or in Serbian “blokovi”, are plural name for a group of urban neighborhoods.
A lot of people that live in the old part of Belgrade can’t really navigate in New Belgrade. Why is that? New Belgrade is a planned part of the city, so all of the buildings in each block look pretty much the same.
A picture can tell more than a thousand words, right?
My block was a movie set for French movie ,,Banlieue 13”. Luc Besson, famous French film director, writer, and producer wrote a screenplay for this movie.
On the other hand, the officer blocks, and their grayness and drabness have earned the reputation of some sort of urban ghetto during the 90s.
Now you probably wonder why these blocks are so special. Believe it or not, Serbian people more than anything like to eat, drink and socialize. That’s one thing we all agree with, and which bring us together. So, it doesn’t matter what you do for living, your age, your financial situation , all the people that live in one block hang out, they sit on the bench, or go on the top of the building (depends of the weather), drink bear, play cards, or some other game, chat, make a barbecue etc.
Most people in blocks received their apartments through government-funded social programs, the population is very socio-economically mixed. It is not uncommon to have a bus driver living next door to a neurosurgeon in the same apartment block.
So if a stranger wants to meet a Serbian men or women in their relaxed mood, the best time to do that is during summer nights somewhere outside, anywhere in New Belgrade blocks.
p.s .Whatever you do, do not insult the block! People that live in blocks are very sensitive when it comes to the number of the block.