It's been an eventful week as always, with trips to the TV company, to pay bills, soaking rain, snow in October, and reunions with old friends, so please sit comfortably, this could take a while, but I do need to get the 1400 bus, and it is now 11:47 so maybe it won't be so long!
Monday night started the process of getting TV hooked up here, my good friend Giany and his sister and her boyfriend were kind enough to take me to the nearby city to buy a TV from a big mall. This process in itself was quite bizarre, as before I could even get my hands on anything I was required to give my name to staff for their computer (services here don't seem capable of doing anything unless you give them some personal details (remember I needed a passport o buy a hoover last time I was here!). So after giving my name I was able to actually pick a TV, then I had to get it checked, to ensure it worked, so the TV was packed and unpacked, before I was then able to go and pay for it. I headed for the desk, where several documents were waiting for me, with my incorrectly spelt name on them. Several of these documents were stamped after I paid the cash, then I was ushered to desk number two. At desk number two (just 5 metres away from desk 1 ) I handed in one of the documents, where it was again stamped and taken, before I was given a new warranty document. But wait... the process was not yet complete, with my new document, I was ushered to desk 3! (just 2 metres - opposite from desk 2). This was the security desk, where I handed in my remaining documents, got another stamp of approval and was finally allowed to leave! On leaving the store with my 'degree certificate' in the field of Electrical purchasing, we bought much needed Ice cream! On Monday lunch time I again enlisted the help of my Romanian friend to not only guide me through the now tropical monsoon that flooded the town, and soaked me from head to toe, but also to go into the TV station to get the TV signal switched back on at the house. This process was fortunately far more simple, and after a quick exchange of cash, and a visit the same evening from the TV man, we had a working TV! See me and Giany in his famous Romanian DACIA car below...
Tuesday night was taken up with another visit to Targu-Mures, but this time it was to meet with my former college fro the hospital Lia. I had randomly bumped into her at the wine festival last weekend, and enjoyed a pleasant two hours with her before dashing back to catch the last bus home. I mention this because on leaving the pub it was bloody cold, but more shockingly it was snowing! Snowing in October, is unusual I am told for here... The next day I proceeded to watch lots of TV news footage of cars sliding all over the singular Romanian roads, also caught out by this freaky weather event! (There is only one motorway in the whole country and it's not that big!)
The rest of the week has been spent with friends catching up and I was given a very touching gift form my friend's son, - a scarf of Dinamo Bucharest football club, the year they won the league championship (1990 I think). So thank you Vlad for this gift! I hope you enjoy the Liverpool shirt I have left for you! And yes Carl, I know about the freak goal that sent Liverpool to another defeat at Sunderland! Catosrophie as they would say here!.. I just read about it!
I won't go on about last night leaving party, but I must mention my Friday night. I went with my adopted sister's Sari & Judith to a Hungarian class 'prom'. It was not anything like any prom/ball I have been to. It was situated in a building/tent on the outskirts of town, in the freezing cold! The night consisted of some kind of talent show, kids doing sketches of teachers, and a very funny mock class of gypsies. There was a fair bit of impressive gypsy dancing too! In between all this there were maybe 10 couples who had to do various tasks, answering random questions, sing a song, dance whilst holding a candle, and not letting the candle go out. After these varying embarrassing tasks, embarrassing to me at least, they duly elected a king and queen.. they got the king selection right, but were way off choosing a rather inconspicuous girl to be queen... Still, after a brief emptying of the hall, we returned to the now converted tent, to the disco... and danced the night away. However no one had quite expected the cold weather, so the disco initially consisted of a line of people, most wearing coats and scarfs (me included), in an almost straight line in the centre of the tent, standing and shivering under the heaters! I guess you could call it line dancing! The tent, soon hotted up as did the dancing! See pictures below!
So my round up of the past 7 weeks. Top three places visited.... 1)oh it has to be the weekend in Turda because of the randomness of the entire trip, 2) the wacky salt mines of Praid with bouncy castles and table tennis tables, and 3) The Sighisoara film festival.
Top three random moments must include: 1) the visit to evangelical church service in Turda... 2) being stranded in Mica (small village) at sunset after getting off the bus to go to the toilet, and 3) going to the class 9 or 11 talent show / prom this week... just brilliantly random!
I really am saddened to be leaving today, I hope you all have enjoyed the tales from Transylvania and I'll add a couple more entries on this of my 2 week + journey home. Thanks to everyone here for making this experience all it has been!
oh and I guess I should show some things we have been doing at the hospital with the patients! (see below!)
Regards from Romania