Welcome to Bucharest!

October 26, 2013

Dear Family and Friends,

I hope you are having a nice weekend. I’m writing from the hotel in Bucharest. Its in the center of town and small and comfortable. I used three different currencies today, the hryvnia, the euro, and the lei. Its 1 Leu, 10 Lei. I arrived at the airport on time and they had free wifi there, so I had a nice video chat with Lev. He made fun of Ukrainian people’s accents (and is really good at it) so it was a good thing I had headphones.

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The people at the airport were wondering why I was laughing so hard. I miss him a ton.

I arrived in Bucharest after a layover in Munich in the early afternoon. I dozed off on both planes :). I did not get ripped off by the cab driving me from the airport to the hotel. At first, the meter was not pointing towards me, so I made sure the driver pointed it to me and I saw it the whole way and calculated the per kilometer cost as we went. It’s a thing in Bucharest that the cab drivers rig their meters. 20131026_144254The driver pointed out all the buildings to me. “Lady this is hospital. Do you understand?” Lady this is __.” I didn’t understand everything he said.

I unpacked and showered and then set out to explore and work. The hotel is in walking distance from the old town so I went there and had a late lunch.  At the restaurant, I had an omelet, some polenta (which is used as bread in Romanian cuisine — who knew), and salad. I over ordered but wanted to try some new dishes and also wanted to ensure there were vegetables. I sat outside because it was so beautiful out, but everyone was smoking at me. 20131026_144108I kept shifting my table so it wouldn’t get in the way of the smoke and that kind of worked. The buildings in the old town are really incredible, very statuesque.

Then I walked to the Carrefour and spent the rest of the afternoon collecting prices. Back at the hotel, I tried some romanian cheeses at dinner. Fresh cheeses are a big deal here. I thought some were better than others. I drank zero coffee and only tea. I’m alive! 20131026_145251I’m just pointing that out. I’m not swearing off coffee because Turkish coffee is coming up, and I really like that stuff. Tomorrow I’m going to sleep late, and then i’m not sure! If i had more time, I would go to Dracula’s castle. Maybe I’ll go for Halloween? If I work tomorrow that might be a possibility. Hmm! That would be a really awesome way to spend Oct 31! Each day as I walk around by myself I appreciate it so much more after spending last survey not doing that at all. Until tomorrow!

Love, Annie

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