I finally made it back from vacation...and what a vacation it was. To give you a quick over view of my itinerary I left on Tuesday of last week and took an over night train to Bucharest. Spent the day in Bucharest before taking a very early flight to Paris on Thursday. Took the train to London late Sunday evening and took a plane back to Bucharest on Tuesday. Actually getting home was quite the adventure involving a plane ride, a overnight train ride, a bus ride and hitch hiking the last few miles to my village in order to make it back earlier than planned because at that point I was done with traveling and just needed to make it back and finally rest.
But what a trip it was. Four capital cities in a week's time. Traveling on my own through multiple countries only one of which speak English as a native language and doing so without any assistance from a travel agency or tour group. Altogether I think I was really successful.
For a start Bucharest was a lot more delightful this time now that it wasn't winter and I had more freedom to explore the city a little more. I discovered a couple things I missed the first time I was there and was the most surprised by the fact that the people there speak so much differently. I couldnt understand most of what they said and the feeling was mutual. Luckily they speak English mostly as a second language instead of Russian so I didn't need to rely on my Romanian skills as much.
Upon getting to Paris my first impression was that I didnt really like it but then again it was raining and cloudy and in general looking depressing outside. But once the sun came out it was like a whole new city. Incredibly beautiful no matter where you looked or where you were in the city and it didnt matter if you had a map as long as you followed a reasonably large road you always ended up at some large magnificent building that was well worth the walk. My favorite part of the trip was probably the Eiffel Tower though. The walk up to it through the park was just perfect. And as you got closer you could see more and more detail in the iron work and it only made the tower even more beautiful. Tied for second place was the food shops selling amazing french pastries and the pantheon which is museum now but used to be a church and many of Frances most important citizens are entombed in the crypt underneath.
London was not as enjoyable. With Paris the weather was just a fluke but with London it is well known that the weather is very gloomy in general and gloomy weather has a way of always putting me in a bad mood. And in Paris there were a lot of times when the sun came out and lightened the mood but no such luck in London. It was either rainy and cloudy or just cloudy. The people were also not so easy to get along with. In general I had no idea what anyone was saying and as a person who quite enjoys the british accents and watches quite a lot of british tv shows I was quite surprised by just how little I could catch in real life situations. However, the accent did make dining in Burger King seem like a real restaurant. "How can I be of service to you my good sir?" "Shall you be dining in with us or shall we prepare you food as take out?" But aside from the pleasantness and politeness associated with the accent I found the actual people to be less polite. The best way to put it would be to say they were rude in their politeness, or perhaps polite in their rudeness. With the French it was more of a lack of politeness rather than the presence of rudeness. More apathetic I should say. In the end I would say my favorite part of London was for one finding a Dr. Pepper and for two just the overall quaintness of the town. It seemed more like an overgrown English town than it did a city in most respects and while I wouldn't say it was beautiful it was definitely charming. Which is in quite contrast to Paris.
Anyway. I am trying to rest after my vacation and this blog post is starting to feel like work. So I will simply provide the links to my Facebook albums with my pictures and inform you that as soon as I feel up to it I will be posting some YouTube videos of my trip. But for now just the pictures.