As you can imagine living in Ireland, we are some what way out of the distance of central Europe. As once described by Roddy Doyle in “The Commitments” the Irish are “the blacks of Europe” 🙂 Every country you go visit or live in has its differences, Ireland like many other countries is no exception. The way we talk, act,carry on and so forth. As a people we are hard-working when we need to be and very laid back also, never short of a joke or a good story. All work and no play makes for a very dull day. We like to have “the craic” where ever and how ever we can. Today I was thinking about some of the difference that I have seen since I came to live in Romania. Just little things, but I’m sure a few Romanians might agree with what I write about here today.
The local bus
Everyday Mon/Friday I get up to go to work, I get the 355,or 330 to where I work. It takes maybe 25/30 mins at most to get there. In this time, I have noticed that no matter how hot it is outside; and no matter how hot it is inside? The windows for the most part are always closed, very rarely do I see a window open, no matter how many people are in the bus. If you are brave enough to open a window, then be ready for someone to close it just as quick. For some reason, I don’t know why. But the older generation of Romanians in particular, think the cold will hurt them in someway or that they will get sick. Sometimes its like a tin of sardines on the bus, there are so many people packed into it. If you’re a claustrophobic person, please take the metro!! If not, for sure you will have a panic attack on the bus and die during rush hour 🙂 (don’t say I didn’t warn you)
The local bus conductors,
For sure it you are a foreigner they will see it and they will approach you looking for your card, to see did you pay before getting on or if the card is valid. I’ve had one or two run ins with these guys. If it was legal to hit them by all means I would love too, as would many other Romanians. Quite simply put, there assholes. Maybe not all of them but the ones I had dealings with. They took me off the bus one day and tried to scam me out of 50 Lei, I payed my card before getting on the bus. They came and checked it. For sure they switched the card and then said, no money off, off. So I got off, they threatened me with the police. Then wanted me to pay 50 lei fine, I called their bluff and said ring them. When they seen they weren’t getting anywhere, they gave me back my card and told me to go in a not so polite way. So I obliged and got the next bus.
Old women in the supermarket,
The first time I ever went to the supermarket it was an eye opener. In Ireland we are very relaxed when we go grocery shopping, in Romania however it’s a different story altogether. Think of it like, formula one driving meets destruction derby!!! The old women and gentlemen think it’s a race, they are very fast and eager to get their shopping done, so much so that when you are weighing your fruit or vegetables, personal space goes out the window. They will be almost be humping you from behind to get in next to weigh their groceries. Space can also be another issue if there coming down your aisle, be sure to get out of their way or use your trolley like a shield and attack their trolley till you can push your way through. I’ve had a few stair downs with some old ladies but I stood my ground. Luckily enough I have a bit of fight in me. As for the trolley, it never fully recovered and had to be put down… dame you old lady!!!
(Ps…. I have nothing against old people)
Men going around with their T-shirts above there belly’s like tank tops,
Not to sure what to say about this, but yes its true? Its seems like its fashionable here, Men of all shapes and sizes, young and old. On a hot day for some reason lift their t-shirts above there belly’s and let it all hang out, as the air works its wonders around said area. I’m not criticizing, its just an observation. Each to their own as they say. If you did this in Ireland, a few eyebrows would be raised.
The traffic and crazy driving,
I’ve read a few articles about Romanians driving, as in any big city people are always in a rush. My father is from Dublin so when visiting relatives in Dublin I got a good feel for this their also. Bucharest is no exception!!! The traffic lights can go from red to orange and for 0.5seconds later when it turns green you better be driving off or you will hear the beeps from the cars behind you. It’s good my Romanian is not so good, I can’t understand if there swearing at me and my fiancée or not? I just smile and wave goodbye. But for sure if your driving here, it wont be long till you learn how to swear in Romanian 🙂 While also becoming an unqualified rally car driver.
This article is just a little look at some of the things I noticed here, please rest assured no trolleys or old ladies died in the production of this article…
If you like what you see here please feel free to share, comment or like the article. Any feedback is always welcome.