Something is fascinating about this city. Belgrade is not just another town, it has been a reference point during my whole life. It is standard to think about a city you must pay a visit to once in your life. For me, this was Belgrade. Above all, the desire to visit Serbia was a bit primitive. My interests are beyond football, a pack of experiences by themselves. I find myself in front of a random building, sitting on a bench and just observing. Watching people walking down the street, perceiving the scratches that can be seen in the pockmarked walls of the building. It is cold and I still can't believe I am here. As cold it is, it makes me feel alive. Those words I can't understand, that alphabet is surreal for me, the look I remember from the 90's.
It is strange for this to happen, but I need to take football apart from my joyful dreams of watching football in the Balkans. I need to consider football as part of this unusual context. This is how everything started some years ago and it is a plot point of the history of these people. If the eyes are the mirror of the soul, in Belgrade the walls are the mirror of a foggy past. It's grey, with a melancholic tone.
FK Partizan stadium is jail-like. Bars, graffiti and darkness. It is not the kind of place you would love to visit, but it is the kind of place I would die to visit. With a ticket in the ultras sector, I had some rakia to warm up. It was -6ºC and I bought the most beautiful scarf I own. I get intrigued by the Serbian police, they are like Action Man figures. Just like in Argentina, but here I don't understand them. And I don't think I did in Argentina, either.
For me, Grobari aren't singing songs. It is something more tribal, basic and powerful. Especially when some of the lads start with the shirts off, some with flares in hand. They are enjoying themselves, there is a frenzy on the terrace and a wildness within the Partizan ultras. All of them are in black, warming support for the black and white team. It's a fascinating experience, something I've never lived before.
The Serbian gastronomy is revealing, people are friendly and there are so many cool bars. I feel so comfortable in the town, Serbians are so good with me. There is a need to respect their history and how these people have lived during the lasts decades that comes along with visiting Belgrade.
I can appreciate how good I felt during my stay in Serbia. However, I still don't understand Belgrade. It makes me smile. There needs to be a grey tone named as 'Belgrade' in Pantone's chart.