We enjoyed a somewhat relaxed day today with no official program, but lots of activity.
Many of us had breakfast outside on the terrace of the hotel and watched preparations for a parade later in the the morning — we saw a couple of bands march past on their way to the ceremony, so it was a lovely serenade with breakfast. The students discovered the delights of a sumptuous Serbian breakfast buffet, which includes everything you might think of and then lots that you wouldn't, culminating in some rather lovely dessert bites - not for nothing does our hotel have a famous patisserie in its cafe.
Several students then headed off to see the Nikola Tesla museum. He is the person who invented lots of things but seldom gets the credit — including the mechanism for transferring AC current that we all rely on every day in our homes. (Edison invented the DC system that was not nearly as effective in transmitting power over distances — Tesla is the man who made distance transmission of power possible, and therefore the modern electricity supply grid.)
Others headed to the green market just down the hill from the hotel and enjoyed not only a lot of free samples, but an interesting shopping experience with lots of excellent produce.
In the afternoon some of us went on a tour with two students from the Faculty of Philology, who took us to Kalamegdan park and the Belgrade fortress, where a big family festival was in progress. We heard traditional music, saw lots of displays, played with some mediaeval weapons (this is a fortress, remember!) and also did a little bit of shopping at some of the craft stalls. I'm sure some of you will be recipients of some of the purchases in due course. We learned a lot of history, but also heard a great deal about current conditions in Serbia, all most interesting.
A group of us went to dinner at a nice Italian restaurant just round the corner from the hotel (a little fatigue is setting in, so we didn't venture far) and I think everyone has now retired again for an early night.
The delayed bag has arrived, so we are now all complete and with luggage.
Tomorrow we start our library visits and a week of packed activity.
Everyone is doing well and is looking a bit less frazzled than yesterday. It's amazing what a good night's sleep can do.
More news tomorrow.