I have written about the glory of rakija before. Most often times it was to poke fun at Serbs for how much they love it, other times it was to poke fun at Americans for thinking it was the Devil’s urine. There are few Americans that can get past the burn of the first sip, get drunk enough, and try another. Between myself and rakija? It was an instant love affair. The very first night I met my Kume, he and I bonded over drinking glass after glass. Over the years I have heard my wife and many others tout rakija as a sort of medicinal elixir.
Drink some if you have a headache.
Drink some for back pain.
Drink some for a missing digit.
Drink some for breakfast.
“Snake oil salesman! All of you!!” I’d shout. To no avail.
As I write these words to you, I am a convert. I AM A BELIEVER!!! Rakija healed my torn leg muscle.
We venture back to November when I started playing flag football at the local rec center. Before you scoff, I played last year, I work out regularly, and I run. I’m a player!! I can still smash with those kids out there and they know it! After the first game I felt fine, probably because we won, but that is a whole other story. By the end of the second game I had a pretty badly pulled leg muscle, bad enough that I went to the doctor to get some muscle relaxers. The pills were doing the job but I was afraid that I would injure the muscle again.
It was around this time that Milena (the wife) suggested I take a drink of rakija before the game, “you know, to loosen you up”. The fact that the game was at 6:30 a.m. was lost on her. So what the hell, I did.
And brothers and sisters let me tell you that I will drink TWO before any and every game that I play of any kind, as long as I am able!! The rakija loosened me up like I never thought possible. I felt warm, toasty, and maybe even a smidge buzzed. It was magical. I ran faster, hit harder, and juked more…..jukier, than ever before. The results were so obvious that several of my teammates are on board.
The next time you have to compete raise a glass, or two of rakija, kiss your injuries good-bye and play your ass off!!
TO RAKIJA!! ZIVELI!!