THE ROAD TO NORTHERN ROMANIA
Dragons, good fairies, water spirits, ogres, Nymphs, ghosts and leprechauns. In Romania it is said that you can find all of them in the north of the country. And if you want to go there as a backpacker, be ready to play the role of Alice in Wonderland and listen to all the stories about mythological creatures that people are willing to tell you. These are a few excerpts from my journal I kept every day while I was exploring this part of the country.
At 5 a.m the roads were empty and the powerful blizzard would make anyone stay home. But not me. I was in a cab, praying to have enough time to catch the train. It all began on December 29, at the main railway station in Bucharest. I was following my dream and this time nobody could stop me. What was my main objective? Find the Romanian villages where it is said that traditions are kept alive, go and live there for a while and document everything. Better said look for the elders that are preserving Romanian cultural values and customs.
When I arrived in Sighișoara, I went directly to the medieval fortress where I had found accommodation. I slept in a room that looked exactly like a tomb, my friend wished Happy Holidays to literally every person on the street, in a bar or a restaurant, I visited The History Museum of Sighișoara where I discovered really important pieces of information for my research and stayed away from the internet. I should have simply named this project ‘Living Life’.
One day, while I was walking down the street, I discovered an old clockmaker. I stayed in front of his shop while small ice particles were falling from the sky. I froze. I smiled. Feeling like I was in a fairytale, in that moment I knew that I had to speak with that person who had a job in danger of extinction and who could tell me what was his career path long time ago . Only by talking with this type of people, I can write their personal histories and in this way, pass on the stories about Romanian traditions.
We didn’t have a plan for that day so we just took a train to Copșa Mică, where we imagined we could drink mulled wine while waiting for the next train. But we arrived in the middle of nowhere, carrying our backpacks, freezing, eating oranges and walking along the road at night time only to find the nearest open place.It was not a bar but a gas station.
If you are curious to find out what happened during this adventure to Northern Romania and what have we done in that deserted place, stay tuned and follow my stories on Independent Skies Magazine.
To be continued…
Written by: Smaranda Rutzui