July 22nd - Sad bears and battery-eating ants!

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October 6th 2012
Published: October 6th 2012
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July 22nd

Ildiko and I met latish in the morning for a bit of breakfast, we went to a nice café for coke and toasted sandwiches, followed by coffee. The café had photos of various musicians on its walls (and in its toilets), including recognition of the awesome Billy Gould of Faith No More (he was in the nice dining area, not the toilet).

Ildiko took me on a pretty comprehensive tour of Subotica (turns out I’ve been pronouncing the name wrong) and it’s kind of a pity; it’s a lovely city, but there are so many buildings that are half completed, as one mayor starts them and the next abandons them in favour of some other project that, in its turn gets abandoned… I wonder if Dave Cull envies that approach.

Quite a few statues around, including a giant metal framework Ant sculpture (that apparently doubles as a used battery depository) and one of the top half of a guy sticking out of the ground with a manhole cover next to him.

We caught the bus out to Palić to see the manmade forest (beautiful) and lake (likewise), the area had been done up really nicely with lakeside attractions and such (including an aquatic Zorb) and although there were unfinished buildings here too it seemed to me to be a good example of how Subotica could get a few tourists in, apparently Belgrade is becoming more and more of a tourist hotspot and it seem like Subotica should be able to get a piece of that drunken ignorant tourist pie as well (if they want it!)

We went to the Palić zoo and it was a mixed bag; there was a good range of animals and a few interesting setups to allow you to get closer to the animals, and unlike Ljubljana zoo, I didn’t see any kids scream at or spit on any animals! On the other hand, some of the enclosures were horribly small (they have been working to improve this) and some animals could have used some company, the sight of a lone polar bear wandering listlessly around his enclosure was particularly heartbreaking.

Plenty of fun though, Ildiko and I spent a while watching the antics of the meerkats, they would frolic around while one of their number kept watch for predators… it was quite interesting really, he seemed to have a system to it; left, right, left, up (so no crafty birds could swoop down on them), a quick left-right-up combo and then back to left.

We headed back into Subotica and had fruity drinks and a good sized meal, all for about NZ$20 or thereabouts. We hung out at my hostel; I was the only person in the 4-person room so it was a good way to escape the rain. Talked until far too late and then parted company (I don’t envy Ildiko having to get up early for work tomorrow).

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