Stories of Our Childhood: Do you remember how we used to travel to the Sea?

May 5, 2017 8:30 AM

Yugoslavia12Already in May, my mom would start to prepare for this venture that was supposed to happen in July. She would buy a variety of colorful and flowy materials and sew our clothes, beachwear, evening dresses, and shawls matching with beach bags, hats with a rose made of the same material as the bag and many others. We were completely following fashion trends, and we looked, as my mother liked to say: “As from the catalog!”

Before the trip, my dad would take our Stojadin (Zastava 101 De Luxe) to our neighbor Enver to examine brakes, pour the oil, check all sorts of things and only then we would be ready to go.

We would depart early, mom looking just fabulous, first to Miladije, then to pick up my grandmother, who was waiting in front of her house surrounded by bags and bundles of all kinds. Mom would get crazy, argued with grandmother, return half of the bags back to the house etc. And then we would continue our trip to Sarajevo, where my aunt was waiting for us on Stup. My aunt had a house by the sea, which is why she always had the need to transport some bulky things and pieces of furniture, and which would make my mom crazy.

After that, we would continue to Mostar, the four of us like female Topalovic’s, and it was at the time when there were just two lanes over Bradina and Ivan Sedlo and cars were overheating, stopping, breaking down… Mom was always saying that our Stojadin can hardly even go, and that it is no wonder when it is under such a burden, and that there is no way that we will make it to Ivan. However, we passed without problems every year and mom would always say: “That’s just because our Stojadin is De Luxe,” and that she was lucky to buy that special series, as well as that our Stojadin was returned from the export, otherwise such quality was not available for the domestic market. It is interesting that our Stojadin actually never stopped.

Mom would be back to herself somewhere around Metkovic. She would stop complaining just then. They would drink coffee and make a break there, we would walk around a bit and then, as soon as we get into the car, someone would shout: “Stop to buy some peaches!” And we would buy and ate them in the car, and these peaches were really delicious, and although they would make us all sticky, but then it was easier because at that point we could feel the sea and all the troubles would be forgotten. We would leave the aunt in Drvenik and depart to Makarska, happy and cheerful.

During the next 15 days, we were noticed at the beach in our fancy dresses and bags, cheerful and happy. Grandma was bargaining for souvenirs, olive oil and meeting with the half of the beach. She was getting up early in the morning and preparing coffee, without which the holiday was unthinkable. Upon arrival, we would talk about our sea adventures throughout the year.

And how to explain to modern generations now that five people could fit into Fico including tent and chairs, that five children could sit on the back seat of Stojadin, and that all of that was not uncomfortable and difficult?

I guess that love does not require a lot of space. Love needs a good team.

(Source: Sanja Hajdukov/


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