Have a Nice Road :-(

Romania Add comments

I try not to form opinions about a whole country, especially on a short visit, but my overwhelming experience was that people in Eastern European, especially Romania, were quite hard. By hard I mean tough – tough to talk to, tough to interact with, tough to get a smile out of.

Not every one of them of course. We met plenty of people who were friendly and outgoing; offering to help us with directions or give us information with a smile. But the large majority of interactions, most specifically with people in the customer and public service realm was a bit frustrating. Again, I don’t like to form opinions.


It could have very well been the particular people I met, but when going from country to country, one can’t help but develop a sense for the overall mood of a nation. Anyone who’s been to Thailand will know well the carefree and friendly vibe of they country after only 24 hours.

I’ve mentioned a few times how bad the roads are in Romania. Frequent signs marking construction or missing pavement were simply a bright yellow face, but in place of the usual a smile was a grumpy frown with eyebrows dipped angrily inward. I found if ironically iconic.

I wasn’t even going to write this post, because I didn’t want to give a bad impression of Eastern Europe. I’m loving it here and their lots of great people. Even when they seem cold or hard, it’s probably just on the outside.

We had just filled up with gas for the last time in Romania before heading to Bulgaria. The station attendant stood next to my van window with his hands in his pockets and his rock solid glare that had held its unforgiving position through my smiles and jokes. As I started to pull away, in relieving and fitting words, the young man, still grimaced, tried his best at English and bid us a good journey saying, “Have a nice road.”

2 Thoughts on “Have a Nice Road :-(”

  1. Dave Says:

    Of course they aren’t so pleasant there John. Aren’t they mostly Vampires?

  2. UT Says:

    They’re only 10-20 years post communism. The attitude, mistrust and general negativity must still pervade society.
    UT

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