It is the eve of the first day of school. I got my supplies tucked in my bag, my new impossibly white tennies poised by the door and my first-day outfit laid out. It's go time.
Actually, I don't have any of that anymore. Perhaps it's because only teachers report tomorrow, and I've been told the day's events include a meeting squeezed in between a late arrival and rounds of "Ce ai făcut vară astă?" Or, perhaps it's because I haven't bought new tennies for school since Clinton became president and put out "Sample Some of Disc-Sample Some of D.A.T." in the same year.
Either way, I'm not nervous. I only say that because I thought I would be. I guess it's because everyone's been pretty nice so far. I guess it's because I'm a bit more confident in expressing myself in Romanian. I guess it might just be because I'm foolhardy.
Maybe it's just because the nervousness has been ousted by excitement: to start, to meet my kids, to finally do what I've been assigned to do.
Whatever it is, it starts tomorrow. Tonight, I'm posting because of the last two weeks. We had an all-TEFL conference in Sinaia, then a group of us took a short sojourn to Sinaia's bigger neighbor to the north, Brașov.
The conference was a conference. We were quarantined in conference rooms, feigning interest while postcard days passed us by. (Actually, glumesc. This one had some really great, practical sessions that were well worth the time, and we got to meet all of Group 27, the ones who immediately preceded us here.)
Sinaia, named that by nobleman Mihai Cantacuzino when he returned from a pilgrimage to Mt. Sinai, is a beautiful mountain resort town. Most of my pictures are from a visit to the monastery he built in 1695, since our time was limited. However, we go back in December. I'll bring my camera.
In Brașov, we only had about 36 hours, but we made use of them. We took the telecabina to the top of a mountain to look over the city from the Hollywood-esque Brașov sign, saw the Biserica Neagră and were fortunate enough to hear a live concert from the 4,000-pipe organ inside. (They only play it two months out of the year, three days a week, once per day. All those lined up during our 36 hours there.) We weren't allowed to snap pictures, but I took some audio.
We also stayed at a great hostel right off Piața Sfatului, the historical center of the town where they used to burn witches and torture prisoners. Now it's a bit more genteel. In fact, it's everything you'd imagine a European piazza to be: bars, restaurants, an outdoor market, picturesque fountain, crafty pigeons, etc.
Anyway, as usual, it's all found in the picture album. Enjoy!
Until next time, something clever.