Chronicles of a writer abroad

Romania by the numbers


Hello there!

As of last night, I am safely home in Zürich after my trip to Romania. And as of this afternoon, I welcomed another houseguest — my sister Leah is now here visiting for a week. So while I want to tell you all about my trip, I think I’ll be uncharacteristically brief for the moment, and give only tantalizing hints about the adventure through the following figures. Please let me know if there’s something you’re curious to know more about!

Number of flights from Zürich to Bucharest: 2

Number of days that it took for KLM to deliver our lost luggage: 2

Amount of compensation offered by KLM: $25

Number of near-accidents caused by stray dogs en route to Targoviste: 1

Number of dogs in the pack of strays that escorted us home one evening: 7

Number of times I stepped squarely in dog poop: 1

Hour of the first family dinner: 2:30 am

Number of dinners centered around an animal slaughtered by Stelian’s cousin: 2

Number of relatives that I met in the first 12 hours of our visit: 9

Number of glasses of strong homemade wine drunk by family members before verbal hijinks incomprehensible to me ensued: 1

Numbers of cities visited: 3

Highest peak visited: 2,200 meters

Length of our hike in the Carpathians: 13.5 km

Number of times husband usurped my usual role by slipping and falling in mud: 1

Number of castles visited: 1

Number of churches visited: 2

Number of public squat toilets used: 1

Number of attempting-to-convert Mormons encountered: 2

Number of seconds that the beautiful parliament building in Bucharest was gazed upon: 60

Number of famous-rocks-that-are-supposed-to-look-like-Sphinxes-but-don’t-really visited: 1

Litres of honey gifted to me by Stelian’s beekeeper grandparents: 2

Number of delicious pastries eaten: 342*

Number of embraces received: 574*

Number of multumescs (Romanian word for thank you, and the only one I am comfortable pronouncing) uttered: 1,443*

Amount the whole experience was enjoyed: unquantifiably much

*Note: some exaggeration may occur.


7 thoughts on “Romania by the numbers

  1. Number of recent arrivals named Leah I’d like to say hi to: 1

    Number of times I snorted my lemonade reading your list: 2

    Number of times I reread and calculated the comment on litres of honey gifted: 2. (Litres!! Huh!)

    Number of insights novel and unusual about Romania: Well, pretty much 24. Thanks!

  2. Awesome. Did you make good impressions on them? Hope all your romanian practice paid off.

    • Hey Ryan! I constantly wished my Romanian was better — should have practiced more, actually. But the family was gracious about my small efforts to speak…

  3. this will go down as a classic! informative, chuckler-ific and so efficient. that is a lot of honey … hoping it got home safely to Zurich without any mishap.

  4. As a writer, you have just become proficient with a precis 🙂 I’m still smiling as I write this but you really must expand on the numbers when you catch your breath.
    I’m so glad you experienced another country with Stelian and his family and now can be catch-up time with Leah.

    Love to you all.

  5. LOL one of the best travel repots I have ever read, Kristen. The seven dogs must ahve been fun. sorry the luggage went astray, and delighted the trip was so great. No Nosfiratu traces then….noticed the Carpathian cycle trip….

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