Archive for august 30, 2007

How to Understand the Bloc

joi, august 30th, 2007

In the Communist days, there was a tremendous frenzy to house people in cities in apartment buildings, each one known as a bloc (block). There is a classic Romanian film called The Death of Mr. Lazarescu. Totally worth seeing. There’s a line in there that I absolutely love, where Lazarescu’s female neighbor says "totu?i suntem [...]

How to Choose a Train

joi, august 30th, 2007

You are in one Romanian city. You wish to travel to another and do not have a car or for some other reason decide you wish to use the rail network to facilitate your journey . May the Lord bless you and keep you Option 1: The Sageata Albastru or Blue Arrow. This is an [...]

How to Understand the CEC

joi, august 30th, 2007

You’ve seen it everywhere, the decrepit little offices of the CEC (check), scattered all throughout whichever Romanian town you are currently visiting or residing in. But what is it? What does the full name Casa de Economii ?i Consemna?iuni mean? What goes on inside there? Is it a bank? Is it a government office ? [...]

How to Keep Your Clothes Clean in Romania

joi, august 30th, 2007

Whether fresh off the plane or fresh from your laundering, you are walking the streets of Romania with some clean clothes. However to keep them clean? It’s something you probably never gave much thought to, but here in Romania it is an absolute must. Dirty clothes will make everyone think you are a cercetor, a [...]

How to Anger a Romanian Instantly

joi, august 30th, 2007

Interested in angering someone in Romania in an instant ? Want to lose all traces of hospitality, generosity, friendliness in every single Romanian you will ever meet? It’s simple enough : say anything kind about Gypsies or show any curiosity or interest in them whatsoever.   Don’t do it Peace

How to Understand Prices

joi, august 30th, 2007

Oh you little intrepid traveler, somehow you have made your way to a Romanian store and stand bravely with your purchases, waiting for the cashier to total them up so you can pay and be on your way home. But wait! There is no cash register, or else it is standing there unused and the [...]

How To Play Marunti

joi, august 30th, 2007

When you first come to Romania, you will inevitably be invited to play a game. The invitation will come unannounced and you will have no choice about whether to play unless you are quite prepared. The game’s rules are not enshrined in any rulebook, nor is there any official name, but it is nonetheless the [...]


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