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Old Tiger Old Forum Travel Journal

Posted by old tiger , September 21, 2014 · 17,598 views

Thanks to Skip...i got my old journal back... I would have been very sad if that thread should get lost..
if you wanna read it====click on following link,please..

View Journal

i reckon you cannot reply on it,..but no worry,..you will be able to do so in my new started blog...
and oh my friends...i am not finished with my travelling,..i'll try to keep on travelling that until my last breath(ahah)
i will put some of my adventures on here about my 40 day trip towards Romania and Bulgaria..
well..just came back yesterday...i will find the time to post some decent stuff..about these 2 East European countries..

  • skip, old tiger, TheSamantha and 2 others like this

well...I left on 11Th August with a Tarom flight from Brussels towards Otopeni airport(Bucharest)Tarom is a small company with only about maybe 30 planes who fly around=some Airbus..they told me they have very skillfull pilots(ahah)after a flight of 2.40h i landed safely on Romanian soil..took a private cab to my hotel where i stayed last year as well=see my old journal..Bucharest is a VERY bustling town with wide big boulevards and TOO many cars..I know my way in this crazy town==got myself a ticket for a 1 month unlimited travel on subway and local bus+trams..I must say that i am very impressed the way transport is  organised in this big widespread town...one sees all kinds of things on the streets which one cannot imagine elsewhere,Roma gypsie ladies selling fruits,gadgets,beggars of all kind,homeless folks sleeping on benches,cars with flat tyres parked on pavement where normally people should be able to walk,the weather...It's BLOODY hot in Romania in august=always over 30 degrees=the locals call it==canicula days=heatwave...anyway..I can take sunny weather better then rain or wind(ahah)i will tell you about my 4 days i spend in Bucharest before I booked a train ticket to Mangalia(Black sea coast)oh..I loved the coast=mare neagra they call it in Romanian from Constanta,Mamaia up to Eforie Nord+Sud,

Neptun,Venus,Saturn,Costinesti,Mangalia and finally Vama Veche which i would classify as the Ibiza from Romania=direct trains from gara de Nord (Bucharest) straight to Mangalia for 69 lei=and about 4h trip with the local folks who were very surprized to admire my beard(ahah)i talk a bit of the local language.so...not too much confusion really..(will be continued==keep on reading,folks)

the crew of Tarom airlines see to it that everybody feels O.K,landed in Otopeni on a heatwave temperature of over 30 degrees Celsius=in Romanian they call it canicula days which means something like heatwave?i took a private cab to the hotel where I stayed last year==good value and excellent staff...I know all of them...I feel at home there=they got 2 new girls on the hotel check in counter..after i reached at about 2.30 p.m=i needed a break and bit getting used to this heat(ahah)in the evening i went to have dinner in the English trafalgar pub which is situated in the same street,lovely place...good service,the waitresses recognized me from last year(hihi)got a few cocktails as well...where for heaven sakes they find names like blowjob or sex on the beach for a cocktail drink?i went also to a metrou station(subway)to make a pass for 62 trips valid for 1 month and also an unlimited bus+tram pass for public transport all over Bucharest,i must say that later on I was very impressed how public transport is organised in this BIG city...drink..crazy...nebun they say in Romanian language..  the next day i planned to do a museum or that doubledecker sigtseeing tour through Bucharest again..I will try to put some pics in this blog later on...in that way you can all travel along with me(aha)I will NEVER give up travelling,until my last breath i will try to see different places..it's in my blood..


a link for Trafalgar English pub==have a look at the menu and the cocktails..ahah..

P.S==I had an orgasm once in that pub(hihi)




    • IRQ42 likes this

O.K...next day announced itself as very sunny,what do you expect if it's already 28 degrees at 10.am(ahah)so i made a subway ride towards Piata Romana to have a cool local beer at a cafe terrace called Nescafe Milano=just a nice place to sit under wide parasols,friendly service and really relaxed environment..in Romania one always gets a small leather booklet with the bill included in it==a tip(baksheesh in Romanian)is not compulsory...but i always gave 1 or 2 lei anyway.. after that i decided to visit a few musea which had to do with Jewish Romania==subway to Piata Uniri and then asking the way towards Strada Mamulari 3==where one finds the Jewish Synagogue=beautiful building really and a good welcome by the rabbi..I even had to put a *keppel* on my head=see photo...very interesting museum which depicts the life and history of Romanian Jews=very educative,in fact one always comes to a point of the holocaust=one can see lots of pictures,testimonies etc..of that era.. i walked around in here for more then 1 hour and took some nice pictures..close by was another museum about Jewish history in Bucharest...I did find it very interesting,then afterwards i went into a big Carrefour supermarket which we alsdo have in Belgium with beers like Duvel,Leffe,Belgian chocolats etc... close to Piati Uniri one finds the old center of Bucharest called Lipscani with many pubs,restaurants,walking streets,old Greek Orthodox churches etc..I came back few times to this section of the city...I loved it..enz===taking a subway around 18.00h in Bucharest is bit of a hassle=one pops folks in like in Tokio subway...and also beware for the local Roma pickpockets=one calls them boezoenara in Romanian language===watch your belongings and pockets(ahah) never had any trouble myself===ah==i look like a bloody gypsie myself??



picture of me in a keppel...woooh





pic of me inside the Jewish synagogue(Bucharest)






inside the synagogue Bucharest..









    • TheSamantha, morrow and Rio_Jackson like this

In the first place I did wanted to book a train ticket seat from Gara de Nord towards the Black Sea coast for 14 august,went to the busy railway station by subway...I love the metrou system in Bucharest=it's convenient,quick,reliable and cheap and it brings you where you wanna go...the subway stations are full of shops for food,drinks,gadgets,shoes,travel suitcases etc..they look like supermarkets sometimes...so...i got my ticket booked for 69 lei and a 4h travel time direct to Mangalia via Constanta...4,5 lei equals 1 euro..a train ticket in Romania tells you a vagon and a locuri number=wagon+seat number..I was looking forward for the experience of train travelling in Romania,I knew it's slow...but patience is a virtue,they say(ahah)in the Gara de Nord one can eat in KFC=that's chicken drums etc=pui in Romanian,and free WIFI,same for Mc.Donalds and subways which are also located in this railway station,there is a mini supermarket,plenty of stalls to buy softdrinks or a beer...after the visit to Gara de Nord I went by subway to Piata Victorei where I was looking for a street called Vasile.ALecsandri=had bit of trouble finding it but the people of Bucharest are very helpful(if the speak English that is)I wanted to visit a small museum called Storck=it's an art museum about sculpture and paintings,Storck was a German and he did some excellent pieces of art(sculpture)while his wife was a painter who got particulary interested in Roma(gypsie people)their house is now a museum,the caretaker was a frisky older lady who really gave me a good explanation in French=she was very proud to speak that language,and she spoke it fluent enough..I took some nice pictures in that museum...will try to put few here in this posting,after this visit I wrote a notice in the guest book and went for a cool beer...good heavens===it can be hot in august in Bucharest,but I loved it...it was about 35 degrees and many  places to sit and have a cool Timisoara or Silva beer for 10 lei...the beer is usually lager or pilsner but Silva dark is about 7%,Stejar beer as well,it's not Belgian beer but anyway...it quenched my thirst...in the evening i went to Trafalgar pub again near my hotel and had some food there...good service and an excellent place to relax...I love that pub..


some information about this worthwhile museum...


Fr. Storck and Cecilia Cutescu Storck Fine Art Collection Bucuresti, Muntenia

Phone 021 2113889   021 6138515 Address Vasile Alecsandri, 16 Description

The museum, founded in 1951, is housed in the former home of sculptor Frederic Storck and his wife, the painter Cecilia Cutescu-Storck. The building, designed in the Anglo-Norman style, is the work of architect A. Clavel and was built in 1913.

The main front of this touristic site is decorated with stone ornaments (belts, frames, bas) made by Frederic Storck. The interior is distinguished by a number of murals, bearing the signature of Cecilia Cutescu-Storck.

The Museum’s collection includes graphics, painting and sculpture belonging to the artists of the family - Karl, Charles, Frederick Storck and Cecilia Cutescu-Storck.

Karl Storck (1826 - 1887), the first professor of sculpture at the Academy of Fine Arts in Bucharest, founder of the dynasty art with the same name, is present through works and models for public monuments.
Carol Storck (1854 - 1926), the eldest son of the artist, is also represented by several portraits and small plastic works.

The rich selection of works belonging to Frederick Storck (1872 - 1942), the youngest of the family, includes a variety of portraits, nudes, heads of expression in bronze and marble, medals, plaques and pieces of numismatic value. Cecilia’s creation is also represented through many drawings, oils and panels for mural decoration.



a picture which i took inside Storck museum..



    • TheSamantha, morrow, Rio_Jackson and 1 other like this

welll...I can tell you all i do not only travel around to see a nice museum..I also feel the contrasts,the cultural aspects or even the discrimination or political issues of a place..in the case of a country like Romania i can write a book of what I've seen and encountered in my voyages going from Roma gypsies and their lack of integration into Romanian society,to the new rich of Bucharest who drive around along the big wide boulevards of Bucharest to show their status,their big luxury cars and wealth=where did they got their money??i also talked or met Romanians which are highly qualified in their job but they earn only a fraction of what they should be payed for their status?of course Romania is into the EU now...what does that mean?why everything in this world has to get disturbed or manipulated by this worst drug ever invented in this world=MONEY....i went to a shopping mall in Cotroceni(Bucharest)called AFI palace with an ice skating ring,a Lebanese restaurant with a waterfall around..what a luxury...I felt misplaced in there...and some folks told me===never go to Ferentari or Rahova neighbourhoods because of the Roma gypsies who steal your wallet?boezoenara==the average Romanian does NOT like Roma's because they do not adapt themselves into normal society...a Roma gypsie begs,steals,eats not enough...but where do they get their Mercedes car then?in 2013 the Roma gypsie king Florin Cioaba died while on holiday;he forced his 12 year old daughter to marry to a 15 year old boy==he said==traditions are traditions;..in Romania the legal age of marriage is 16..i bet the Roma question will always stays an issue in Romanian society...there is a village called Budesti=about 30kms from the capital where there is a population of 37% Roma's...in my opinion the average Romanian does not like Roma's,avoids them or is afraid of them..some folks are scared to go out because they think they will get robbed??is that a society to live in??i spoke to a lot of Romanians=young and old===i just find them to be lovely helpful people...but they are in a fix with themselves,their future,the way they have to lead their life..


I will go further into this issue because I care about the fact HOW people live,the why and why not in life;..we all got these issues..

Romania is a complex political world where corruption most probably gets its way..but where does it not?we even got corruption in Belgium..forgive me to say so..people are people and I do not like injustice,but sometimes it is inflicted upon them and it becomes a real society problem..we should do something about it really...but often we are just helpless..

let me tell you all==Romania is a beautiful country...with nice and friendly people...I simply loved it....and will go back one day!!



some information on Romania=see link below...



    • Radu1968pt likes this

so,last day before my train trip towards the Black sea=Mare Neagra resort of Vama Veche..

I decided to to the hop on/hop off doubledecker sightseeing tour again which I did last year as well...
it's always a cooling effect to sit on top of that bus and feel the breeze..
next link tells the stops where one can hop on or off,

click on the top link=more about Bucharest if you wanna know more about what to see or explore..




I got on at Piata Victorei=25 lei day ticket...quite a few tourists...and it was a bloody hot day as well..

to be honest=i did not like this tour as i liked it last year==the Arcul de Triumph is in restoration and covered with a plastic sheet,lots of streets are in construction work for new pavements,in fact Bucharest looked like a building construction site..

took few pictures of the city and also the Dambovita river,of course going on a bus tour like this is relaxing...

i cannot imagine myself walking big distances in such a heat of 35  degrees Celsius..

I include few pictures=first one from an avenue with some fountains working,lots of fountains in parcs were out of order due to the climate,I suppose,second pic is me gangster style on that bus,picture 3 shows the Dambovita river which runs through Bucharest

I got off that bus on Piata Romana,went into KFC for some pui(chicken)and a large cold Coca Cola(ah)

went back to the hotel by 6 p.m and went for a beer and a cocktail drink in Trafalgar pub...

tomorrrow my train would go at around 10 a.m..direct to Mangalia=i was curious about what would happen..


pic 1=some big boulevard with fountains..




pic 2=me gangster style(ahah)




pic 3=Dambovita river(raul Dambovita)



    • TheSamantha, morrow and Rio_Jackson like this

so..did not wanna miss that train(trenul)to Mangalia...I was way too early in Gara de Nord...plecare and sosiri==the departure and arrival panels which give you a linia(platform)my train would go from linia 14 at 10.20h,got some sofdrinks and a Stejar beer for the trip..only travelled with a small rucksack,some clothes,some toilet stuff,a camera,mobile phone and the necessary stuff to charge these things up..and cash money and my visa card which I needed to pay the accomodations booked ahead in  Vama and Varna..I was heading for a place called VAMA VECHE which is about 2kms from the Bulgarian border on the Black Sea coast=Vama Veche translated means old border..this place is famous for its beach,its bohémian feeling,it's parties on the beach+++I call it the Ibiza of Romania...the folks who go there are normal and abnormal holiday makers=with abnormal i mean folks who are always drunk,drug addicts,pickpockets,hookers etc...you will find a mix of people in that place...I am in the middle of normal/abnormal(ahah)in Romanian they say==nebun(crazy)the trainride=well...sat in front of an old Romanian couple who did not speak a word of English...so...I practised my Romanian(aha)nice people they were..bit shy to sit in front of a stranger like me..

the landscape between Bucharest and Constanta is somewhat desolate with stations where one still sees abandoned wagons from ages ago...very arid and dry landscape;..lots of open fields==Romania still got lots of free space on their countryside..

the train stopped for a while around Constanta,then went on to Eforie Nord=Eforie Sud,where I saw lots of birdlife around the sea=there is a lake called Techirghiol where folks take mud baths,saw some nudists on the beaches as well..that mud seems to have medicinal values...I'll try to get a link about it..the Mare Neagra is VERY popular with Romanian holidaymakers specially in August...after Eforie comes Costinesti which is famous amongst students..then followed some funny seaside resorts with names like Aurora,Olimp,Neptun,Jupiter,Venus,Saturn etc...reached Mangalia about 2 p.m in a scorching heat...35 degrees,met a student from Bucharest who told me we should go outside the station and take a micro bus to Vama..this is a small Mercedes bus who goes for shorter distances for a cheap price...finally reached Vama and booked into my accomodation=a nice hostel called Pura Vida=straight on the beach..I am gonna make 2 or 3 postings about Vama because I got lots to say about that place...I loved it..because...I am crazy=nebun..i got some pictures,links,and will tell you about the parties on the beach...


first link==Pura Vida beach hostel...i talked to the owners=a couple from Bucharest...well..they earn their money well...they have a hostel in Bucharest,rent an appartment there as well..I must say my stay in Vama in their place was O.K..I was in a 6 bedroom youth hostel style,with free toilets,showers,kichen,wifi..but take care of your belongings..really cheap and very convenient location...I loved staying there...very relaxed holiday mood 24h/24h...I booked 2 nights via internet..




a link about the mud from around lake Techirghiol==good for reuma etc...==click a few links!!




a general link on Vama Veche..



So...at Pura Vida beach hostel it was full speed hectic life,there is a bar and one can sit or lay down in a place annexed to it,lots of travellers,mostly backpackers from all over,lots of foreigners as well...got shown into my bunk bed room where 3 Australians were snoring=they were out all night,I made my bed ready and believe it or not=the room could not be locked..that is not a safe feeling,but anyway...first had a beer on the Pura Vida bar,some Romanian stuff..then i walked bit around=i must say=Vama is a very hectic busy place,took some pictures of the beach,it was FULL house all over,i ended up in a hardrock bikerpub called La Pirati and got befriended with a bunch of bikers from the city of Cluj Napoja,nice people...we had a few beers together and  I took a picture of one of the girls..by the way=she is a dentist,she said..her boyfriend is an engineer in electricity and wanted to go to the USA,but she refuses to go...so they are stuck in Cluj...anyway..I put a you tube here about La Pirati=I am not such a fan of heavy metal like Manowar etc...this bar turns LOTs of hardrock music...headbangers style..I went to a pharmacy as well to get some unguent for my hand=in fact while gettting down from the train I made a dive on the tarmac...I slipped while stepping down...nothing broken,probably a sprain,still feel it today(ahah)food enough in Vama=pizza,shoarma,junkfood,anything goes...i had some pizza which the bunch from Cluj asked me to share with them..had some beers like everybody else did in Vama==i can take a beer or 2,what i do not like is that folks booze and get stupidly drunk or become agressive,that's not my point of view of having a party time..in the evening we all went to the beach==damn good music,mostly funk,R&B,hip hop etc...I loved it,danced my ass away really;..there are other dance pubs on the beach=check out Expirat,Goblim,Stuf, and Gulag..

came back to the hostel at 4 in the morning,bit tired I must say(hihi)


a you tube on Vama bikers mentality..




biker girl from Cluj=a dentist..





this is how the parties go on the beach in Vama Veche...



pic of Vama Veche beach..



    • morrow likes this

allright==day 2 in this crazy place Vama Veche announced itself again at over 30 degrees Celsius...wooh...

all these sun seekers were on the beach for sure?..I just went back to the hardrock pub but did not find anyone who was there yesterday..were they all drunk yesterday? i found a nice hippie clothes shop where i bought a colourful Nepali shirt==as a matter of fact I do not wear anything else?am I nuts?well no...I simply love the material,the colours,the ease of wearing a Nepali shirt...

after that I took some food=a soup=vacula(ahah)and them some pui(chicken dish)the waitress wanted a backsheesh because I payed here the exact amount and she said=it's the same amount(hihi)so i fished out few lei out of my pocket and she gave me a multumesc smile...oh..is money the most important thing in life?I found out for transport towards Bulgaria for my next day==result==there is no transport from Vama towards Bulgaria=there is a Ukrainan bus service between Odessa-Varna(Bulgaria) which does only stops in Vama if one has reserved a seat online...and I did not do that...so..I decided to  walk to the border or hitch hike===it's only 2kms from Vama to the Bulgarian border=my destiny was Varna where I booked a nice hotel called Odessos...for 2 nights..I was curious...but that's just the thrill of adventure=one never knows whats gonna happen next day..so..this day...I went to explore Vama Veche beach...lots of activity..every beach got its own name with an adjacent beach bar in fact==i sat down at Expirat and in the late evening I guess i saw a local band called Vama Veche who played at one of the beach bars...do not recall which one exactly..went to the hostel quite late again=i guess it was 3 in the morning..I was quite curious about what Bulgaria would be as a country...i was only going up to Varna and then return into Romania towards Constanta and Mamaia...to be honest...they told me that Bulgarian gypsies are the worst when it comes too stealing ..they are specialised in stealing cars..but since I did not have a car..I did not worry that much...(ahahah)(will be continued)

next morning...got up around 9 and left Vama towards the Bulgarian border,there was no other option then to walk the 2kms or to hitch hike..I did both(ah)nobody picked me up,i can understand that around borders,and most of the cars were full anyway..it was a bloody hot day,luckily i took some cool softdrinks..reached the Bulgarian border..an exchange for valuta=so..i changed some euros into lev==1 euro is about 2 lev...on the border lots of cars waiting to cross,there was a small cafetaria where i again got some soft drinks because I had to hitch hike and i was expecting a long wait into the scorching sun...i was surprised how easy i got into Bulgaria,the border official just said O.K after showing my ID,...i had to reach Varna because I booked 2 nights in Odessos hotel..started walking and just over the border there was a van with a Bulgarian,he called me and said=I take you to Shabla for 25lei..which was a rip off...i tried 15 lei but no,so..i took that ride,in fact I was glad to get away there,between the border and

Shabla comes Durankulak,quite monotonous scenery=just dry fields..the fellow who took me worked as a waiter for 20years in Berlin(Germany)so we could have a decent conversation..he dropped me at the bus station in Shabla and told me there was a bus to Varna at 12.20h...which was NOT true...the bus station looked deserted,the ticket office was closed,not a soul inside,some Bulgarians came along and they told me there was a bus only at 16.30h because it was saturday...i decided to go on the road and hitch hike direction Varna,took me 2kms to get out of Shabla..stood more then 1 hour in the hot sun,finally got a ride with a Bulgarian young musician,he took me up to Kavarna which was a better town to take a bus towards Varna..got myself a ticket for 9 lei for a mini bus towards Varna...everything is in cyryllic script,nobody understands English..;i was in for an adventure..oh yes..after Kavarna very nice scenery around Balchik..nice town=there is a botanical garden,nice beaches around as well...but..had no time to stop there...reached Varna..first impression=nice place,good roads,lots of traffic...from the bus station I took a cab which also was a ripp off,i guess...but anyway...this Odessos hotel looked like a 5 star to me..woow..got a room on the 3d floor wiith shower,toilet,nice big bed,fridge etc..free WIFI and even a balcony...i paid 78 euro's there for 2 nights,breakfast included..friendly staff who finally spoke English...refreshed myself and made a walk towards the beach=this hotel lies at the corner of a big walking street called Slivnitsa...and it's a 5 min walk towards the beach...I will put a few postings on my stay in Varna===really nice city...i made a walk towards the beach,had my dinner and a beer,nice beach but not like Vama(ahah)lots of activities on the esplanade in front of my hotel=saw a group of Bulgarian hip hop street dance fanatics..well...I must say acrobatic performance...

made a walk on Slivnitsa bulevard==it reminds me of the ramblas in Barcelona...lots of animation,restaurants,pubs...I loved it..


picture 1=Bulgarian border..






pic 2=Odessos hotel Varna..




pic 3=Varna beach...



pic 4===a Belgian Stella is never far away=on Varna beachfront..


day 2 in Varna...and also my last day in Bulgaria since I only planned a short visit this side,perhaps in the future I might visit Bulgaria again==not so bad at all as a country,I reckon?I wanted to visit 2 places today in Varna=1=the Orthodox Cathedral and the etnografic museum...the morning looked not very promising weatherlike=the hotel staff told me it was gonna rain...first I made a stroll around Slivitsna boulevard and few side streets=i got lost a a matter of fact...i wanted to visit the etnographic museum and i couldn't find the exact location==stupid me..it is marked on tourist information poles

=museum=300 meters...I  did like that information..so...I finally found it=it's on Ulica Panagjuriste  which is a small alley down from a main boulevard...open from 10.00h until 17.00h=entrance 5 lev=the lady at the ticket office was surprised to see me because I was the ONLY visitor in the whole museum==photography forbidden,but..I couldn't resist it==I did not take ANY pics with a flash..there was  no control so I went ahead..am I a naughty boy?nice museum which depicts a traditional Bulgarian house with clothes,jewelry,furniture,well..I must say one can learn something about a Bulgarian lifestyle..I will try to put few pics here..do not tell anyone,please(ahah)I did like the traditional costumes..upstairs is a complete old Bulgarian living room=salon,drawing room and bedroom from the middle class society living around beginning 1900's..interesting,i must admit...after that I was walking towards the Orthox Cathedral of the Assumption==to take pics in there one had to pay a certain amount..but..i find these Orthodox churches really worthwhile to visit=they all seem bit similar after a while,i visited lots of them in Romania and i will tell you all about that later...this Cathedral was allright=it dates from 1886..and there was a service going on because it was sunday=it's amazing to see believers of this faith making crosses,burning candles etc...some nice icons in there as well...I always feel bit conscious about taking pics in places like that?but..i did...after that i went for a stroll and guess what,=it started raining..i got lost and could not found Slivitsna Boulevard..I am a fool in directions and orientation...finally after asking the way...

I got back to the hotel...and the only option was to stay inside because it really was pissing rain...and in the evening it still did...pity..i did not go out=had some good food and a cocktail in the hotel bar...talked to the staff about going back towards Romania=seems to be not so easy...I could take a Ukrainian bus going from Varna towards Odessa,they told me I should inform myself about prices in the bus station=bus towards Odessa should go at 13.00h..stopping in Constanta which was my next destination=i booked 2 nights in hotel Maria via internet..

what a fucking rainy day in the afternoon...I did not like it at all...


pic 1=inside the Orthodox Cathedral..




pic 2=Orthodox Cathedral..




pic 3=a detail in this Orthodox church..




pic 4=traditional Bulgarian costumes=ethnografic museum..



    • CoZMiC WiZDoM RaW VeGaN likes this

well...next day I intended to go towards the bus station in Varna,book my ticket and since I did not know if there were vacant places left i was much too early in the bus station,took a cab,young guy who told me that taxi drivers do not earn much,long working hours,different companies in Varna etc..always nice to have a talk with a local=his knowledge of English was moderate...enough for a little conversation...reached Varna bus station around 10 a.m already..the ticket for Constanta was done via Eurolines...the ladies in that office were not very friendly,but anyway..I got my ticket for Varna,they made one mistake==they did not give me a seat number...i went for some food in the bus station buffet restaurant=nice people on the counter but they did not understand 1 word of English..and I did not know 1 word of Bulgarian(ahah)at 12.30h still no bus to  be seen,finally it reached...I must say...bloody nice bus(see picture below)an Italian guy came along and he said he had trouble with the office ladies as well...he wanted to go to Vama Veche,but they told him they could not issue him a ticket for Vama,only for Mangalia,but at the end everything got solved,he said...so boarding this Ukrainian bus...

2 drivers...i wanted to take a seat in the middle of the bus but some Ukrainian lady came along claiming i was sitting on her seat number...I excused myself and went to the drivers in front of the bus=they looked at my ticket and said.O.K...that's the only English they knew,I reckon..so..they finally gave me and Antonio the Italian guy a good seat in front with an excellent road view...nice bus...and nice Ukrainan folks on board as well..

so we started on this sun drenched day==same route as i came before=Balchick-Kavarna-Shabla-Durankulak and the Romanian border checkpost..we reached the border...some official collected all the passports and ID cards...we had to wait 1h until we got them back...took some softdrink,toilet facilities...I recognized the fellow from the snackbar because i passed here 3 days ago=nice fellow..finally we got our papers back==the Italian was able to get down in Vama which was only 2kms further...I told him..just party and dance your arse away(ahah)i was surprised about the condition of the road between Vama towards Constanta==excellent tarmac...I came by train the other day...Vama-Constanta could be 50kms...do not know exactly,but anyway the drivers told me this is Constanta==it was somewhere in the outskirts on a hotel..I started walking and hopped on a bus without paying because I did not know about the system,anyway...got down somewhere in the center of Constanta==in fact near the railway station..asked for hotel Maria and it's only a 5 minute walk..I must say...very nice hotel...and I will tell you all...If you ever go to Constanta==go there,they serve the BEST breakfast i ever had in my life=they call it breakfast Swedish style..I will tell you later about it..

refreshed myself and had my dinner=ciorba(soup)and a main dish followed by a local beer...

well..to be honest with you all..I was happy to be back in Romania(ahah)

next morning in Hotel Maria==oh well..the breakfast alone deserves a stay in this nice hotel=it's buffet style

eggs,bacon,different cheese,cornflakes,saucages,fruitjuice,coffee,tea,hot chocolate,very confortable hotel,with excellent friendly staff..I highly recommend this place=it was about 75 euros for 2 nighs+breakfast,Constanta seemed to be a nice town,but since I only had 2 days planned here and because i reached this town the day before after 17.00h,i did not really investigate or visit most of the sightseeing points,maybe in the future?Constanta seemed to be a busy city to me,I went into the railway station first to book a ticket towards Bucharest for the next day...i particulary wanted to see Mamaia beach resort which lies 6kms north,a bus ticket costs 2 lei in this city,took bus 41 towards Pescarie which is very near to the famous telegonda cablecar,

it was a good experience to get high up above this beach resort and watch it all from 50meters high,it's a 2kms ride in cabins with 8 seats..I got the whole thing for myself..costs a 20 lei for a single ride,i took some nice pics,got down on the main bazar street of Mamaia,made a stroll on the beach and the pier,it was really crowded=it looked like a human meat market to me(ahah)restaurants,fast food joints,pubs enough in this place,i went to the beach to take few pics,made a stroll on the pier,had a Timisoara beer,and went into a Romanian style self service restaurant,took some soup+chicken dish...around 17.00h took a bus back to Constanta,got lost because the bus did not go all the way to the center,nice walk,back to the hotel,just relaxed in my room,sat down in the courtyard with a glass of wine...next day..train to Gara de Nord Bucharest...


pic 1+pic 2=Mamaia beach..









Pic 3+4=cable car Mamaia(telegonda)





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let me take you all on a cable ride above the Mamaia beach resort===I LOVED it...


so...next morning..walked to the railway station,and was again much too early,but I wanted to know the linia(platform)in Romania a ticket is issued with a vagon number and a locuri(seat)number=for example vagon 6,seat nr.78..Constanta got a nice train station with the necessary food stalls,not like Gara de Nord Bucuresti but that's not so important..the train was in time and we set off...I was in a compartiment with a Bucharest family from Berceni==nice folks who spoke English exept the grandmother...the scenery...nothing famous really..funny names like Cernavoda,Fetesti rolled by...I did not like the way it all looked...too desolate..finally we reached the outskirts of Bucharest=Basarab looked like a ghetto from the train=lots of flats with dirt all around...the folks from Berceni told me to avoid Ferentari and Rahova areas in Bucharest=it's not even safe for the locals..too many Roma's,drug addicts,criminality,gangs,prostitution etc..as a matter of fact the Roma's are all over in Bucharest streets...never had any trouble with them...in a way...

i like the way their women are  dressed=they wear long colourful maxi's...from time to time i had to deal with Roma beggars but I always told them get lost...i am going to put a you tube here in which you will see why I do not like Roma's too much...allright..they are human beings,but they should try to live an honest life...Romanian gypsies create problems abroad as well as in their own country=see you tube...I cannot understand that folks exploit their own folks for the benefit of money..this you tube is bit shocking to look at,but it shows the contrasts how real gangs exploit others to build big villa's in the middle of nowhere in small Romanian towns where Roma's really create a problem..




so..Gara de Nord Bucuresti..i was bloody hungry and took some chicken(pui)dish in KFC,then took a subway to my hotel around Stefan Cel Mare..

and went to the Trafalgar English pub close by..nice place...I like that pub a lot..

tomorrow I was gonna see my girlfriend and her family...very nice people..I must say!!!

This morning I moved out of hotel Casa Gabriela and went to my girlfriend's house...her father owns a flat where nobody lives in and he told me I could use it for free...it was in the area of Drumul Taberei..we went there by cab and they explained me how to use everything in the flat=I got the keys and I cannot thank this family enough for letting me stay over there...I really enjoyed my stay over there,it's in a safe neighbourhood of Bucharest and finally I made use of my bus pass which was valid for ALL bus,tram and trolley connections in greater Bucharest...it's a 20 min bus ride from subway Universitate by bus 137,138=to tell you all...I was really surprised about public transport in this vast city..the subway(metrou)is safe,punctual and user friendly,there are security guards observing trouble...one minor thing=avoid taking a subway ride in the peak hours...they pack folks in like sardines..and then pickpockets get their chance==so..watch your purse or pockets...a subway ride for a return journey costs 4 lei...i used my 62 ride ticket(for 1 month)a lot..one just has to validate it every time,for the bus or tram one does not have to validate anything with the bus pass I took...it's a 1 month card=looks almost like a visa card with your proper name printed on it..taxis are all over as well and they cost 1,40 lei a kilometer,which is fairly cheap,beware the taxis in the airport==they ripp you off...so this day...I settled in into the flat,shower+bath,nice sitting room,bedroom and kitchen,and even a balcony to dry my clothes...I made a bus ride from Drumul towards Universitate,then a subway to Piata Romana...I know a very interesting pub there with tables and umbrella's===Cafe Nescafe Milano..good for a cool drink and protection for the blazing sun as well..took my food in Mc Donalds just next door to this pub..then went towards Stefan Cel Mare by subway...and took tram nr.1 up to Cotroceni Afi Palace,walking distance from the flat,but I took bus 137 again which comes by there(ahah)


you tube=a subway(metrou)ride...I used the north to south line a lot=Pipera-Berceni..but other cross lines as well...I LOVED it..


pic 1=subway platform Bucharest..





pic 2=relaxing at pub Nescafe Milano at Piata Romana..







Out of the 40 days I spend in Romania and Bulgaria.I got 2 days rain=1 in Bucharest and 1 in Varna(Bulgaria)

this day announced itself as very cloudy and rainy=a surprize for me since Bucharest in August is always *canicula* weather as the locals call it=that means temperaures between 30 to 36 degrees Celsius..so...i decided to have a lazy day..I ventured outside without an umbrella=I did not get the rain too much because the bus stop was very near by,took bus 137 for 1 stop=AFI Palace Cotroceni..now;..let me tell you about this place=see picture and you tube...this ultra modern shopping mall opened in 2009 and I was really taken back that in Romania consumer society is in full bloom..to be honest=i do not care much for shopping malls and their luxury goods and shops...Romania is often pictured as a poor country but if one goes into Bucharest city with malls like Baneasa,Bershka,Carrefour etc... then one starts to think that this society has changed tremendously since 1989 revolution and Ceauscescu's departure..I  do not wanna go into politics here...I think Romania is a country of contrasts specially Bucharest and some cities versus the poverty of the countryside...it's a vast difference...just let me tell you=why does Bucharest needs casino's,sex shops even?in my eyes the jet set of Bucharest indulge in too much luxury...more then they need...i have seen Porsches,Ferrari's,big Mercedes cars just driving for showing off they got these cars..they just drive the big city boulevards...anyway...I entered this mall and wandered around all over,took some food in KFC,in front is a rock climbing wall with a Lebanese restaurant on top...I wonder what a menu will cost there?there is an ice skating ring as well,..a cable car,a fun park for kids etc..

I felt out of my place in this mall...i can go there for a drink,or some fast food,but I would not buy anything in these shops,in fact...i do not need fancy clothes at all...a pair of jeans and a Nepali shirt,some good strong walking shoes..and a smile on my face...that's all i need..and some money...pity we can't do without..i believe there is too much consumer society around us and we all get tempted to involve in spending money...that is...if we have the bucks(ahah)i returned by bus towards the flat and did some reading about Brasov city which I intented to visit for a weekend trip...



pic 1=entrance of Afi Palace Cotroceni..




you tube about AFI Palace Bucharest....


in my previous posting I told you about consumerism in Bucharest..but...there is a big but here...Romania is as i said a country of contrasts=one sees extreme wealth and bit further extreme misery and poor or horrible living conditions..I do not wanna go into a political debate here but in my opinion Romania underwent a too direct evolution from dictatorship and its rules towards a free society after 1989,we all know horrible stories about orphanages and their un hygienic health conditions...in Bucharest,believe it or not one sees every day remnants of neglect. and total lack of discipline,abandonded cars with flat tyres,garbish and litter on the streets,cars parked on pedestrian pavements,begging gypsies,it did not escape my eyes..;an average tourist sees only the big boulevards,the stylish buildings,the nice pubs,cafétarias and restaurants..but..there is another Bucharest as well..


in following you tube I want to give you all an idea about how  the society should NOT BE=that means drug addicts,prostitution,criminality,

HIV positives,desperate people living in miserable conditions...in my own opinion they should clean up these sewers and place these folks into proper institutions with health care..but...I think it is too late...i don't think anyone cares about it?I have seen some guys in Gara de nord openly sniffing their black plastic bag..I think that's wrong..if you are claustrophobic,please do NOT watch this you tube...can I get some comment in my blog,please..or do I only post here towards myself?


you know..Bucharest apart from all that poverty and misery..is still a place in my heart which I can treasure for its beautiful architecture and buildings..and also its lively streets and boulevards,..and most of  Bucuresti folks I met just smiled at me..today I was gonna do a museum called George Enescu on Calea Victorei==really impressive building..it's Romania's national music composer,he lived from 1881 to 1955..i give you a website here..      http://unknownbuchar...ational-museum/

so  i entered this museum before noon=there were 2 visitors me and an eldery Romanian lady who lives in Dusseldorf(Germany) for 20 years...later on in she started a conversation with me herself asking me=why are you interested in classical music?i did not know what to answer her because I do not like classical music...i told her..I like to find out about this museum since it has got its history and certainly the presence of this fellow called Geoge Enescu=they created a special exhibit to this museum with personal belongings,his piano,his rooms etc=the pavillion.....really interesting..now... I did payed my entrance fee..and an extra fee for taking pictures...it was worthwhile anyway..I will put some pics here..a museum looks to me like a lot of other musea=one looks at pictures,artifacts,to be honsest with you all==i easily get bored...but in this one...I took interest in what was displayed in a learnful matter=lots of pics,even everything this dude did in his life,his works,his tours around the globe,it's all about his works,his music..nice outlay in this museum...I enjoyed walking through these rooms...took some pics etc..

so==this pavillion==on the entrance a lady was sitting there...telling me I had to put plastic covers over my shoes...Oh well..yes...why not?the lady met me there in one room and we had a discussion about whether Romania is better now then before==she told me that she had mixed feelings about the Ceaucescu times since in these days the elite had everything while the common folks did not(she was from a town called Craiova)and in these days she said nothing really exciting to live in as a town..anyway...I went out of this museum with a good feeling..and spent my day walking around on this vast boulevard called Calea Victorei...I recommend to all of you...I found a little parcul to relax near a biserica(church)after that i had my food in a small side street of Calei Victorei in Lipscani area...very nice walking streets and pubs...i will tell you later about it...



pic 1=entrance to George Enescu museum...beautiful building...but to my opinion,bit in decay?




 pic 2=the violin of this famous composer=they told me Yehudi Menuhin was a pupil of him?




pic 3=personal piano of Enescu displayed in the annex pavillion..




pic 4=my feet while visiting the Enescu pavillion...I told the lady i got no HIV or ebola=she was smiling...



one fine saturday while I was strolling along Calea VIctorei towards the old town neighbourhood called Lipscani...i came across a church(biserica)where a wedding service was going on,since I was curious i walked inside the church and asked someone if I could take pictures...oh no objections...everybody smiling and in a very happy mood...I must say i was quite impressed about how a wedding church ceremony is going on...the couple and probably best men,family members etc..stood before 2 priests who conducts the service,these churches are so beautiful inside...i was able to take a lot of pictures and when the ceremony was over I shook hands with the groom and even could kiss the happy bride..one boy asked me to pose for a picture with his mother because they said I looked like father Christmas..lots of giggles from these ladies(ahah)when the couple leaves the church some white pigeons are released and flowers are put over their heads,I even was invited for the wedding,some fellow said...If you want I will give you the adress...you are welcome...i did not because I was not really dressed for the event(ahah)it was a very good experience to witness a traditional Romanian wedding...in the you tube below you will see what happens..I loved it..people are always so happy when they marry,is it not?and their happiness spreads towards the folks around...the bride looked wonderful in her dress.;when they left the church I could shake hands with both bride and groom..


pic 1=bride and groom standing before the priests..






pic 2=they are a couple now...




pic 3=couple leaving the church..




pic 4=group picture..






pic 5=the happy bride...






you tube about traditional Romanian wedding...


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