Parents’ Visit: Romania
Burke and I had Friday, Monday and Tuesday off from school, so of course as the travel planner I made sure we went to a country I’d never been to before: Romania. On the agenda was Timisoara and a quick stop in Oradea. Burke and I know an adorable Romanian family living here, and they actually are from Timişoara; so they recommended a few places for us to check out.
Timişoara isn’t actually in the mountains, but it is in the Transylvania region of Romania. We kept and eye out for Dracula, but he probably doesn’t like tourists and was in hiding.
One of my favorite things about Romania was how drastically different it is from Slovakia (does it sound like I always say that?). I suppose my preconceptions of Slovakia and its neighbors were that they were all rather similar. It’s not true. Despite the country being the middle of a Slavic area, Romanian is a Romance language. We were all surprised how much English was spoken by everyone. My mother just loves speaking with people, so she asked them how they know English so well, and several of the responses were that they learned the language from watching Cartoon Network. Pretty ridiculous.
While we were there we walked over the whole city, seeing churches, squares, churches, parks and shops. One morning we went to a huge market. The first part of the market was my favorite where people sold random things- purses, hats, and boxes of scarves! Some of the vendors in the market thought the best way to get people to look at their things was to shout at them. It didn’t work with us, but it did appear that the most boisterously advertised merchandise was in the greatest demand.
Another noteable event we attended was the “Wine Festival.” It’s really quite a misnomer because it was no more than a huge carnival complete with circus rides and games. We got to watch some traditional dancers and sample a few Romanian fair foods.
Our last morning in Romania was Halloween. After breakfast my mother talked to the receptionist who she befriended on our first day. The lady admitted that all the hotel staff/guests were excited to see what costumes the Americans would be wearing for Halloween. They must have been pretty disappointed to find us in our everyday clothes.
Our stop in Oradea was only for lunch and to peer down the streets we walked. We went to the first vegetarian restaruant in all of Romania and ordered completely blind from a menu with no English version. I was very grateful my parents were such troopers.
We continued the drive for the next few hours and you’ll have to check back to see where we landed!