Saturday, April 17, 2010

Villages Historic Site

With the extra day in Bucharest, Justin suggested that we go to this amazing historic site created in the 1930s where they went to rural areas of Romania to bring authentic examples of village housing to a beautiful site near the Danube river.  This house dates from 1815 and is from the Carpathian mountain region.  The roof is larger than the house and made of straw that was tramped down by foot.  The density of the material meant that rain and snow would easily slide off.

 To the right is a 19th Century house built in a "Frankish Style" from the Banat area of Romania.

I'll post more photos on the Flickr site maybe tomorrow.  There is an especially strange looking "hobbit house" that was built in the 1800s but is based on the basic Neolithic mud huts which housed people for centuries.

Now we come flying back to the 21st Century!  After walking around this wonderful historic site, we decided to go to a nearby park to sit on a park bench and have some beverages.  I see this scene:

What have we got here?  Looks like some TV people assaulting a group of middle-aged women.  So I had to take a picture of them!  Little did I know that they saw me and we became their next victims, er, contestants. 

The walked over to us and began speaking Romanian until I said Hi.  Then the host of this little quiz show on the biggest TV station in the country (who apparently is also a weather man) switched to English.  Because I was from out of the country, I couldn't participate, but I could help Justin with the questions, which if we answered correctly would get us a prize - a toaster!

The first question was:  Which film did Roman Polanski direct, The Piano or The Pianist.  I had recently seen an incredible film by Jan Campion called Bright Star about the poet John Keats and remembered that she has also directed The Piano.  So we picked The Pianist and it was right.  The next question was:  Where is the headquarters of NATO?  Damn, this really stumped us,  but the city of Brussels came to mind and Justin thought it was a fair guess.  The host now starts telling us the the Belgian people have no sense of humor but that they invented beer and french fries (who knew?).  Finally, the host explodes with: You're Right!  Of course Justin and I play the game as TV contestants acting over-elated about winning.  Here he is with the toaster.

So, for the net four hours we walked all over Bucharest carrying that damned toaster - no wonder people were giving us funny looks!

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