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Belgrade...Tesla, Saint Sava, and my happy place..

I am so far behind with my blogging I have decided to just throw a few things together in an attempt to catch up. Today is my last day in Belgrade before taking a train to Budapest, and I'm trying to squeeze in a few last things to see and do. Yesterday I went on two 3 to 4 hour walking tours relating to the city's history (including one on the communist/socialist years under Tito) and tonight I'm booked on a 2 hour river cruise to finish off ( in a relaxed way) my visit to Belgrade. The first photos relate to last Saturday, when I took a visit to the Nikola Tesla museum. It was a small museum and the static displays were not very interesting, but the fun started when the English speaking tour began. After watching a short film about Tesla's life the young tour guide started to show us the different tricks involving electricity that Tesla was famous for doing in his talks on the powers and uses of electricity. During this part of the tour the kids (large and small) got a chance to have a hands on approach with the exhibits. The most exciting display was when the guide activated the huge transformer and lightening arced between two electrodes. This was loud and spectacular and all the kids were given a fluorescent tube to hold, which lit up like a light sabre in Star Wars. Other displays involved watching the first ever remote controlled model of a boat, and people putting their hands on an electrode through which several hundred thousand volts or amps or something were passing through. This resulted in sparks, buzzes and the occasional ouch, but proved to be harmless. At the end of the day I suppose it would be difficult to do more with Tesla's different inventions than the museum attempts to do ( unless of course you were Walt Disney) Walking from the Museum to the Saint Sava Cathedral I passed a flash restaurant, and noticed they had a menu on the sidewalk in Serbian and English for a NZ$9 meal. I usually manage to grab one major meal a day, either for lunch or dinner, so I thought I would give it a go, I don't know how the KFC's or Burger Kings survive in Belgrade because you can buy great meals in most cafe's or restaurants for the price of a Combo Burger Deal. As you can see my meal was substantial and delicious as well. The Cathedral of St Sava is not only a beautiful building, but also has an interesting story behind it. In 1595 the Turks wanted to punish Serbian rebels, who had attempted an uprising against them, so the decided to take the sarcophagus holding the remains of Serbia's patron Saint and publically burn them on a huge bonfire just outside of the city. Three hundred years later, in 1895, the Serbian Orthodox Church decide to build a Cathedral dedicated to Saint Sava on the spot where this happened. A public contest was held in 1905 to design a building for the site but all five entries were deemed to be not good enough, so no action was taken. During the following years two Balkan Wars, and the First World War stopped all action on the plans, but in 1926 submissions were sought to design a building and one was chosen. Construction began in 1935, but only a few walls were in place when Germany invaded Belgrade in 1941, when the site was used as a parking lot. After the war the Communist/Socialist government who had no use for a Cathedral continued to use the site for parking and general storage until the Patriarch of the Church began, in 1958, to revive the idea and make submissions to the Government for permission to finish the building. He made 88 requests over 26 years, and the 89th request was finally granted to begin rebuilding in 1984. Of course the country has gone through several upheavals since 1984, each one of which halted the construction, but eventually a Cathedral took shape. It is a story that seems more like a work of fiction than fact, but I suppose one of the things that you can take from it is that perseverance eventually pays off. The Cathedral is stunningly beautiful, and although the inside may take another 100 years to complete, it has a palpable spiritual calmness about it even as an empty space. On the way back to my bus stop in town I passed another major Belgrade Church, the Church of Saint Mark. This was built between 1931 and 1940, and for practical and political reasons only the exterior is completed. The interior has a small open space, which holds a wall full of icons, but the rest of the building is closed off while work continues on finishing the interior. The tombs of Serbian Princes, Kings and Queens are kept here, and it holds a special place in the history of the Serbian Orthodox Church for that reason. My final picture is of the Shopping Mall, just up the road, which is the biggest in Belgrade and as well as shops has a 12 theatre Cinema Complex. I don't often get the opportunity to go and see movies, but when the conditions are right, I take advantage of them. The conditions in the last week have been 35 to 40 degree days, and cheap cinema tickets. So when it has been too hot to go anywhere I have headed to my airconditioned shopping mall and taken in a movie or two.......

The Nikola Tesla Museum

The Nikola Tesla Museum


Bust of the man

Bust of the man


only four rooms in museum

only four rooms in museum


many displays of written articles

many displays of written articles


articles in magazines

articles in magazines


like this

like this


another room where small experiments demonstrated

another room where small experiments demonstrated


Then lightening created

Then lightening created


and hand held fluoro tubes lit up

and hand held fluoro tubes lit up


his remote control mechanism

his remote control mechanism


a model of his long island lab

a model of his long island lab


saw an $9 menu at the door

saw an $9 menu at the door


was ushered into an empty dining room

was ushered into an empty dining room


and sat down to a starter of beef noodle soup

and sat down to a starter of beef noodle soup


followed by roast pork, chips and coleslaw salad

followed by roast pork, chips and coleslaw salad


with apple cream cake to finish

with apple cream cake to finish


My next stop the Church of St. Sava

My next stop the Church of St. Sava


another view

another view


inside view towards nave

inside view towards nave


inside view towards entrance

inside view towards entrance


inside decoration incomplete

inside decoration incomplete


frontal view

frontal view


Statue of Saint Sava

Statue of Saint Sava


in front of church

in front of church


Church of St Mark

Church of St Mark


detail

detail


display of icons inside

display of icons inside


main post office

main post office


National Assembly

National Assembly


hotel Moscow

hotel Moscow


Russian art deco design

Russian art deco design


Telecom Serbia building

Telecom Serbia building


closer look

closer look


another art deco building

another art deco building


hjk,

hjk,


tyuyguhn

tyuyguhn


one way to sell old books

one way to sell old books


view from my terrace

view from my terrace


over New Belgrade

over New Belgrade


and more

and more


eighth floor looking down

eighth floor looking down


my aircon happy place for movies & shops

my aircon happy place for movies & shops

Posted by astrix7 17:00 Archived in Serbia

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