Lido Beach


Last night we visited Lido Beach in Zemun. It is located on the northern tip of “Great War Island” (Veliko – big Ratno – war Ostrvo – island). The island is situated at the spot where the Danube River (Dunav in Serbian) splits into its tributary, the Sava River. The island gets its name from the numerous armies that use the island as a launching pad for attacks on the city. The Turks, Serbs, and Austro-Hungarians all used it and the Serbian Army still has a presence on the island today.
In the summer, the city of Belgrade, with the help from the Serbian army, they make a pontoon bridge from the island to the suburb of Zemun. I wanted to check it out so we took the family over last night. There is a small beach on the northern point of the island, called “Lido Beach,” named after the Lido sandbar in Venice, Italy. Of course it was a body of water, so I had to jump in. The kids took off their shoes and splashed in the water a bit. Ocean loved the sand. We will probably head back there sometime. It is much like Ada Ciganlija, but the currents are a bit faster. The island is also a big bird sanctuary so I should try to do some birdwatching.
The View from Lido Beach at Sunset

There have been numerous attempts to develop the island. The Danube occasionally floods it in the spring, which is good for stopping people from putting hotels on it! It is a large green area in the city as you can see from the ariel view. It is supposed to be quite popular swimming beach and they do have a life guard, a couple of restaurants, and two volleyball nets.

Al Jazayer Beach


On our second day on the island, we got outside of Manama. We are staying in the area known as Riffa, which is one of the southern suburbs of Manama. After a morning of skateboarding on the streets of the Riffa Views gated community, we took the kids to Al Jazayer Beach. The beach is located on the south west coast of the island. We was a decent beach for kids. The water was clear and shallow, perfect for kids. There was plenty of playground equipment and the beach was generally free of litter. There were also shade structures and trees to set up a picnic area.

It was strange to see women on the beach in their full “ninja”, or black robes. The only people swimming were foreigners, besides us there was a British family. The closet the locals came to swimming, were two women getting their feet wet. I also saw a family stop what they were doing, face Mecca and pray into the setting sun. No one bothered us and we had a spirited game of beach soccer followed by rock throwing into the water. It was my first time swimming in the Persian Gulf. The water was cold and salty. It must be refreshing in the Bahrain summer. Yesterday tempertures were in 70’s.
Last night, my brother-in-law and I went for drinks in downtown Manama. We went to the Hard Rock Café and a club known as F1. The Hard Rock was exactly what they are all over the world. There were no women in the place, however, and a couple of Bahrainis in their robes and headdress drinking beer. There was a live band in the F1, playing covers ranging from Metalllica to Lady Gaga. There were close to hundred “professional” girls, mostly from China. Several approached our tables to offer their services, which we politely refused. They were charging anywhere from 100 to 300 dollars per night. It was very sad that they had to do this to make a living.

There certainly a lot of money around here with Cadillac and BMW dealerships galore and spectacular sky scrapers. I’m still trying to understand the traditional clothes of Arabs. I associated the robes with the desert, camels, and tents, not driving Hummers and walking through air-conditioned malls. I also see some Bahrainis dressed “western” and others in traditional gear. I want to know if there are certain days or occasions that they were the robes.


Family Weekend Journal May 1-4, 2008

Wrestling, originally uploaded by bill kralovec.

Owen and Sebey are shown above wrestling at the beach. We went up to Puerto La Cruz for the afternoon and played on the beach near the Punta Palma Hotel. It was a great day with me and the boys! Fortunately, it was overcast which allowed the fair-skinned boys to spend a lot of time outside. We also walked around the marina and they enjoyed climbing across the docks to the breakwater. We identified jelly fish, feather duster worms, coral, and crabs.

We had a long weekend due to Labor Day falling on a Thursday. Wednesday night we had Oliver’s birthday party. We spent much time this weekend packing up our personal belongings for shipping to Serbia. We are not clutter people, but it is amazing the amount of stuff one collects over a few years. Phillip Katzmann, my replacement, came in on Thursday afternoon so we went and picked him up. Friday morning was spent briefing him. There was more packing on Friday evening and all day Saturday. It was extremely hot Saturday, and so we had a the swimming pool filled and we spent time in the back yard. Owen and Sebey are taking swimming lessons and I see their improvement already. Oliver is being potty trained right now and he had a successful weekend with a few slip ups. Ocean is getting more cognizant of her surroundings. She is fascinated with colors, textures, shapes. She will spend 15 minutes, exploring any object you give her.

We are heading into our final month in Anaco. It will be a busy end of the school year.

Oliver In Pool