Welcome Readers

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We are making our way through Eastern Europe, discovering wonderful people who are enterprising, caring, struggling with today's changing times and yet doing extraordinary things.  We invite you to meet some of them and see some of the sites we've encountered.  The focus we've adopted, "People first, places second" is a mantra that has really … Continue reading Welcome Readers

Circle of Friends–Part 5: Halloween at Bran’s Castle

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Bran and Fundata Valley This was supposed to be a whimsical stop-off at the supposed setting of Dracula's castle, (based on the real more-gruesome-than-fiction warrior, Vlad "The Impaler" Tepeş) which just happened to be on Halloween. We were headed up from the flatlands of Bucharest, through the gates of the Carpathians, into Transylvania.  Then we … Continue reading Circle of Friends–Part 5: Halloween at Bran’s Castle

Circle of Friends–Part 4: The Capital

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On the road, we headed west and south from Toulcea. After a bit of GPS only guidance, I tried to find our place on the map book and eventually found it. The countryside had gently rolling hills and flat farmlands that stretched to the horizon. Farms were bigger here with fewer houses--there were times you … Continue reading Circle of Friends–Part 4: The Capital

Circle of Friends–Part 3: Tulchea and the Danube Delta

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We arrived near dusk, partly due to the fact that Romania had  just changed to daylight saving time here, but I doubt that's what they call it.  As the sky was turning grey and the winds picked up, Rebecca and I found a small restaurant on the second floor of a row of businesses near … Continue reading Circle of Friends–Part 3: Tulchea and the Danube Delta

Circle of Friends–Part 2: The North East

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(Click on photos to see captions) In this post, we stayed at an inn and at a hotel, not writing ahead, not asking our hosts to engage or talk to us or tell us their story.  It was a bit of a break from interviewing people, a bit of a diversion from our theme of … Continue reading Circle of Friends–Part 2: The North East

Austria, Part Three: Vienna and Iulia

One delightful discovery along the way, was Iulia Pop. In planning for this trip, I had asked my sister's grandson, Drake Southwick, about people there since he had traveled to Romania about two years ago. I asked him for some contacts to help with planning our trip. One of the contacts he gave me was Iulia … Continue reading Austria, Part Three: Vienna and Iulia

Austria, Part One: Scott and Uli

We arrived in Austria, dragging. Transition days are hard on us. There's the physical work of packing up, carrying our backpacks, and pulling the "rollies" up and down stairs, up and into crowded buses or down into subways, and into the air terminal. But more than that, I think the stress of standing in line, … Continue reading Austria, Part One: Scott and Uli