ERROL PARKER | Editor-at-large | Contact

If Jelena Brankovich was heading to her partner’s family home for afternoon tea today, she’d be lucky to get a boiled egg and a cigarette.

But this afternoon, the 24-year-old drug and alcohol counsellor and her partner were treated to a sizable feast that can only be reasonable if you were raised under communism.

“There was an entire lamb there,” she said. “And like four kilos of šopska salata. The seven roast chickens almost seemed like an afterthought.”

“It was just Baba, Deda, Damien and I there. My sisters came over later but Jesus Christ, it was a big spread.”

Making no apologies for whipping up enough grub to feed the entire Fijian rugby team, Jelena’s grandmother, Nina, spoke to The Advocate through her granddaughter just a short time ago.

“We don’t need to go hungry in this country,” she said. “When we left the old country, there was communism which was not working for us. Then this war after communism. Very bad. But Australia, we can eat until we explode.”

“All of my grandchildren are much taller and fatter than I remember the children when I was one. I do not apologise for making them eat as much food as they can eat.”

Nina then refused to let our reporter leave her leafy North Betootan courtyard without first trying everything on the table.

More to come.


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