Thursday-Friday, 23-24 June 2011
On Thursday I went by bus to nearby Cetinje. It is a former capital of Monte Negro, even smaller than Podgorica. Podgorica is to Bendigo as Cetinje is to Castlemaine.
About 4km from Cetinje the bus (Budva-Podgorica route, via Cetinje)broke down. It looked like there would be a lengthy delay, so I decided to walk, although it was a very hot day. After about 2 km I saw a couple of guys sitting at a table under an umbrella advertising a brand of beer. “This looks promising”, I thought. However, they were just employees sitting in front of their little shed. Looked like business (whatever it was) was pretty slack. I mentioned “pivo” (beer) and they pointed to a little eatery not far away. I went there, bought a beer and brought it back. The guys were amused to have a foreigner visit them out of the blue. They rang their boss to come over. They had me understand he spoke good English, having lived in London for 10 years. And so he did come and we shot the breeze for a while, after which he gave me a lift into town. There is a museum in Cetinje which I visited, devoted to the life of Njegos, a 19th c. ruler of Monte Negro, a bishop, prince and poet (not necessarily in that order). He wrote the Montenegrin epic poem, “The Mountain Wreath”. There was a nearby building that housed a relief map of Montenegro made during World War 1 by Austro-Hungarian army officers. It is a stark reminder of how mountainous most of Montenegro is.
On Friday I went for a little boat ride to the off-shore island of St. Nikola (3 euros for the return trip). It has some glorious spots for swimming and snorkelling.