Monday, September 04, 2006

Home Sweet Home

After taking the train from Wien to Timisoara, I decided to simply go home because I was too tired from all the travelling and meetings. Thus, I got off the train in Deva and with the (slow) help of two other regional ones I got to Cluj, the "capital" of Transylvania and from there I went farther north: home. Sighet is the informal capital of Maramures the northern part of Transylvania and thus Romania and it is at it northern end sourrounded by rivers (the name means island in Hungarian) and lots of mountains. Just a couple of pics below to see what I am talking about.

Besides that, I really like my hometown. Although it's quite constant (not a booming/expanding city) it seems to be steadily improving cosmetically especially and it is a clean, quite and neat place to visit. While last year I travelled all over the country, this vacation I stayed mostly at home with a couple of visits to Cluj and to my gradmother in Bucovina.

Trully an epic journey to the North-Eastern part of Romania,Bucovina is the upper part of historical Moldavia, a land full of beautiful landscapes and world-wide famous orthodox monasteries. For me, it was more of a personal jouney and a promise made to my 86-yr old gradma that I will surely go there in case I reach Romania this summer. So, here I am...a man of my word, as always:). Overall it was a good trip just the bad train connections are a fun-killer: on our way there my mom (a very risk averse person) decided upon the safest route but the one with the biggest layover too. For five hours I took a trip in a small ville from Bistrita, Beclean. However, some extreme pushes like this may do some mental good in the long run, hopefully:)). All this said, in the 2nd train I enjoyed again seeing teh beauty of the Oriental Carpathians around Vatra Dornei and Ilva Mica.

It was a nice quite time just to relax and enjoy the moment in a totally rural environment away at least from our everyday's electronic vices (computer, cable tv). I visited also the cities of Radauti and Suceava with monasteries (Bogdana, Sf. Ioan, Dragomirna etc) and historical sites which are proofs of Moldavian ascension in the 15th century. Among them, I saw a Church from 1447, in Patrauti which is included in UNESCO heritage and it isn't one of the main touristic attraction. I wasn't even aware of it and most of the people are in the same boat as me..but there are a lot of beautiful monasteries to visit all over Moldova painted with natural paints and glowing in vivid colours even after hundreds of years.

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