Belgrade – center of the world
Maybe the aforementioned title sounds pretentious, and if you think I’ll be telling you how the whole world came to Belgrade for some important event, you’re mistaken. Such things have happened before and continue to happen, but the event I’m about to write about showed me the city where I’ve spent my entire life in a completely different light – I realized certain privileges that life in Serbia gives.
One of my classmates just told me that he’s coming to Belgrade for a conference, that he’ll be staying for a week and that he really wants to meet me. According to him, it was an opportunity to see Belgrade in the light in which I presented it during four long semesters. Like most of my compatriots, the fact that he “really wants to meet me” I interpreted as a question of whether he could be my guest. And I was right, he warmly accepted my offer to stay at my place, and we had the opportunity to make up for lost time and, during his public activities, talk about everything, especially Belgrade and Serbia as a whole.
He arrived directly from Moscow. As he told me then, it took him more time to get to Moscow from a small town than from Moscow to Belgrade. Of course, he went to Moscow by ground transportation, and from Moscow, he flew by Air Serbia’s direct flight to Belgrade. The flight was supposed to last exactly 3 hours and 10 minutes, but he landed in Belgrade 15 minutes earlier than planned. “From Belgrade back to Berlin a little less than two hours,” he tells me, but adds that he could have reached Milan just as quickly or even faster and better to Rome, Italy, or Athens. It was summer and in the summer in Belgrade it can be very hot: I couldn’t blame him; the thought of the Adriatic or Tyrrhenian seas at that moment almost healed. Knowing that they were “within arm’s reach” was a relief.
This memory is very dear to me, and with the intention of showing you how well Serbia is actually located on the map of Europe, I have compiled this small table, which shows the duration of flights from Belgrade to some European cities.
Almost all major European cities have direct flights to and from Belgrade, often daily. This is something I always knew, I traveled around the world, and even Egypt was close to me (the flight to Hurghada is slightly more than three hours). But, as usual, I never thought about this privilege until someone with enthusiasm drew my attention to it.
|Belgrade||Tivat, Podgorica (MNE)||0h55m|