Archive for October 6th, 2009

New York to New… Nork?


…it’s a helluva town!

Stari Grad’s up and the Limans are down,

The fortress on the hill has tunnels underground.

New York!  New Nork!  Both such hellsuva towns!

Liner notes:

“Nork”: a shopping center ‘for the people’ (and actually, there’s a huge “IDEA” supermarket—a relatively new concept here in Serbia—on the basement level of New Nork).

“Stari Grad”: old town.  Despite its name, Novi Sad has a quaint downtown lined with multicolored two-story structures that have a distinctly Viennese flavor.  This, for example, is Dunavska Street, which extends to the Danube River (or Dunav) behind the camera, and connects up ahead with Zmaj Jovina, Novi Sad’s café-lined pedestrian zone.

IMG_0025Most of these buildings were constructed while the city was under Austro-Hungarian rule in the eigthteenth and nineteenth centuries.  Established in 1694, obtaining its present name and status as a free royal city in 1748, Novi Sad soon became the cultural and economic center of the region. The first grammar school opened in 1791 (a good 30 years before Brooklyn’s P.S.1!),  the Serbian National Theatre was founded here in 1861; Matica Srpska (a time-honored cultural institution and the center for the study of Serbian language, literature, and philosophy) moved here in 1864.  Even after being attacked by everyone from the Turks to the Russians to Hungarian Fascists, even after NATO bombardment left Novi Sad without bridges, communication, and a water supply for months in 1999, the center city is charming, elegant, and welcoming.

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10 2009

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