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Rada Tomcic in the village "Mala Crna Gora" - Copyright by ESI Plain around Zabljak - Copyright by ESI
Rada Tomcic in the village "Mala Crna Gora" - Plain around Zabljak

Some 20 km from Zabljak one reaches the small village of Mala Crna Gora (little Montenegro). It is inhabited by some 20-25, mostly elderly, people. The village is so remote that allegedly Ottoman forces never entered it. With the first snow, the mountain road becomes impassable. Depending on the ferocity of the weather the village cannot be reached for four to six months in winter.

Rada Tomcic, in her 60s, lives here with one of her sons. She has six sons and five daughters, but all except one have moved elsewhere. Her husband died in 2006. Like the other villagers she spends the summer trying to prepare for winter, preparing pickles and other food, before the mountain pastures and the picturesque village are isolated from the rest of the world by snow and ice. In some winters she and her son only manage to dig a small path through the snow connecting the house and the stables where they keep five cows and some sheep. At such times even visiting a neighbour is impossible, as is seeing a doctor or getting to school. Even during summer there is no postal service to the village.

April 2008

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