Brasov, Romania: "Thank you, Teodora"

 

Miami, Florida
August 26, 2001

Dear Dora,

Thank you for your letter from Brasov.

My summer travels have come to an end. I am home, sorting through weeks of mail and bills. I am filling my refrigerator with food. Don't feel sad for me. The weather here is quite hot so I am off to the beach this afternoon.

After five weeks in Europe, I spent three weeks in Lubec, Maine -- the most northeasterly town in the most northeasterly state of the United States. I attended a piano school for adults. This was my fourth year there. The weather was mostly warm and sunny. Since Lubec is on the coast there can also be a lot of fog and chilly days even in the summer.

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The scenery in Lubec is rugged and green. I was able to observe some marine life including whales, porpoises and seals. I will never forget one huge bull seal swimming on his back and enjoying himself in the water. Too bad I couldn't swim with him; the water is frigid.

I was less than happy with the piano part of my trip. The other students were not too friendly. The teachers were helpful but for some reason I just was not motivated. Perhaps I was still thinking about my adventure in The Balkans and wishing I had stayed longer.

I am looking forward to resuming my teaching. I have been in touch with several of the parents and the children are anxious to begin. I do miss "my kids". I have some new referrals so my schedule will be more than full. I hope I don't take on too much. I will need some energy for my travels next year.

Yesterday I completed the photo albums of my trip. I took so many pictures and bought so many post cards that they filled THREE albums. Besides all the beautiful places I visited and all the warm and hospitable men and women I met, I also learned quite a lot about myself and how I like to travel. I learned to try new ways of traveling and I was never afraid.

I must admit that I was a bit anxious heading for Bulgaria and Greece. I was afraid I wouldn't be able to read signs and would have a difficult time. My fear was unwarranted. I was so happy there.

I do hope you had an enjoyable summer. Did you take some holiday time? Did you do any traveling?

I look forward to hearing from you. Maybe you can convince me to come to Europe in December during the Christmas holidays. I have to start now and look for my wool socks and coats.

Thank you again for your hospitality. My visit to your home in Brasov, and our trips to Sinaia and Sighisoara were highlights of my holiday. I showed some pictures to my Hungarian friend Laszlo and he was really impressed with the Peles Castle. For a Hungarian to be impressed with a Romanian site, now that is something!

Always,

Jan

P.S. I bought a small rug at one of the monasteries near Suceava. Together with the plate I bought at Bran and some other souvenirs, I mailed the rug home from the post office in Suceava. Guess what? The package was waiting for me when I arrived home. The Romanian mail does work, even though it took me two hours to get through the process of mailing the small package. The woman in charge of the post office spoke no English at all. We managed to communicate in German!

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