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Srbija 2020

Little Trouble in Little China

Finding myself with three hours to kill on a Sunday, I am always at something of a loss as to what to do. There are the usual household chores, coffee with a friend perhaps, but this weekend I opted to nurse my Sunday blues with a visit to New Belgrade’s finest - the bad-trip carnival that is the Chinese market. What better way to cash in those worthless three hours than breakfast at an impeccable restaurant followed by window shopping for items of endless utility within the confines of a Chinese alternate dimension?

So, this morning I found myself appreciating an admittedly late breakfast in the delightful surroundings of a Chinese restaurant at the market. Sitting down at the table I narrowly missed placing my elbow in the remains of the last customer’s breakfast. It added a hint of danger, much needed in the Formica-clad surroundings.

The key problem was actually getting your hands on any food or any waiting staff for that matter. Various Chinese people seemed to be milling about but it was never clear who was a member of the waiting staff and who was a customer. I felt it a little imprudent to grab some wood be customer by the arm and say to them ‘One Sweet and Sour Chicken, two rices and some Spring Rolls’ to someone who was perhaps ordering the same. So as half the Chinese from the Blokovi got served I sought to flag down a Serbian pensioner who seemed to be the only waitress taking orders from Serbs in the restaurant.

After some frantic efforts I was eventually able to place our order, but not after a good half an hour had elapsed. During this time I had been treated to the sight of open- mouthed chewing from nearby customers, the emptying of unfinished plates into bins at the table and what appeared to be a chef filling up the soap in the toilet. By now a ‘Chinese elbow’ seemed to be the least of my worries. Anyhow, the next stage in obtaining breakfast was ensuring that my pension-age waitress was constantly reminded that I had placed an order consisting of more than one dish.

Eventually after numerous prompts, false starts and coercive nods my order arrived. To the restaurant’s credit the quality of the food was pretty good and very reasonable. It just depends if you can bring yourself to getting your meal by force. And I suppose that Formica and un-wiped tables aren’t for everyone. Anyhow, following a decidedly filling breakfast and weighed down by two surviving Spring Rolls in a doggy bag I plunged headlong into the Aladdin’s Cave that is the Chinese market.

But I imagine that Aladdin would be somewhat disappointed by the place. Apart from the odd useful item (some shell-filled toilet brushes caught my eye) there seems to be virtually nothing of any use in the place. In fact there were times when I had absolutely no idea what I was looking at. It’s something like watching Guess the Gadget on the Discovery Channel. I even considered the possibility of a Serbian, Chinese market-orientated series based upon the same idea. Something like – ‘What the hell is this then bre?’ and ‘Can you actually find a use for it when you have realized what it is?’

So I found myself wandering around the market looking for nothing in particular whilst being scared by various dolls that would look more at home in a Chucky sequel and avoiding trolleys full of foul-smelling cabbage. I didn’t end up making any purchases, (I couldn’t bring myself to leave with just a shell-filled toilet brush) so I left the place empty-handed but knowing, that despite everything, I would return.

China Town- NYC

After my horrifying experience in the China Town-NYC a few months ago, I promised myself I would not even taste a spring roll much less any other kineski specijalitet :-)
Imagine having chicken feet for "Dim-sum"!

Mogao si da jedes i cevape na Buvljaku :)

Why didn't you just have your breakfast at home, go out for a nice walk and then come back home and enjoy your lunch? You either like adventures, or you just went out to the Chiness market in order to have anything to write about on the blog? :) That Chiness market is a Big Trouble in Little Belgrade.:)

Sounds like a normal day at

Sounds like a normal day at the Chinese market :)
Our co-blogger Bganon already had somewhat similar experience a while ago - you can read about it here.

Belgrade 2.0

Actually I'm surprised you

Actually I'm surprised you didnt find the experience a stranger (or even slightly exotic) one.

When you think about the population of Belgrade's chinese community (ie how little one sees of them) and then you visit the market, and see all those people quite literally scurrying around, its a real eye-opener.

As for an aladins cave - well, we are talking about cheap chinese goods here - not Camden Market or Portobello Road!


One more bad dream could bring a fall


Someone needs to open up a real Mexican food restaurant in Belgrade.