Is This Where They Make the Little Hot Dogs in a Can?

It’s a chilly gray Saturday afternoon and I am standing at the window of our apartment in the center of Vienna, sipping apple-cinnamon tea and gazing out at the ornate old buildings across the way. Ahh. This is the life. There are lots of things to see in Vienna, but at the moment this is all I want to look at. What’s that? Why aren’t we in Turkey? Oh, right. We were supposed to pop over there after our stint in Romania. Well, the simple answer is that we were tired of being unsure and confused. As much as I loved Romania, I have never felt so ill at ease when I came to getting from place to place. It was isolating. We imagined that Turkey was not going to be better and perhaps it would be even worse. Besides that there were some other factors that came into play. First, we weren’t really going to be able to do anything in Turkey that we originally wanted to do. Adam had wanted to go to Ephesus and Cappadocia and I had wanted to spend some time exploring the rest of the west coast. But due to time and money constraints, the only thing we could do was go to Istanbul for a few days and then head all the way back through Greece and over the sea to Italy. We had no idea how we would do this or how long it would take. So instead we took the night train from Bucharest to Vienna and didn’t look back. Continue reading “Is This Where They Make the Little Hot Dogs in a Can?”

Romania: It’s Not Just for Vampires Anymore

It’s been quite some time since I have posted, but I just can’t quite get my feelings for Romania to come out right. My feelings for this enigmatic country are so complex that apparently even I can’t tease them out. But the show must go on…

I’ll start by saying that, not surprisingly, Transylvania is not like the stereotypical Transylvania of horror movies. First, it was sunny rather than pouring rain. Secondly, most places you encounter are cities and towns, not solitary castles on hills inhabited by mad scientists. And despite the fact that we were there on Halloween, we didn’t do anything special. Transylvania doesn’t rise up and collectively celebrate October 31st. I hate to shatter any illusions, but I think anyone would find that Romania is still worth visiting even if there are no regular vampire or werewolf sightings. Continue reading “Romania: It’s Not Just for Vampires Anymore”

Hungary Like the Wolf

I woke up confused in Hungary. What time was it? What day was it? What the hell country was I in? I finally pieced it together. I was in Budapest. As far as the time, that was another matter. We weren’t aware that daylight savings had taken place, so the watch said one thing, the computer another and the clocks in the hotel did not agree. It’s a good thing that we didn’t have a train to catch, only time to kill before we could check into our apartment. Continue reading “Hungary Like the Wolf”