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  • Day1

    We arrived in Bucharest late last night. Had a very warm welcome from the hostel receptionist and got shown our nice upgraded apartment for the night. Most luxury I’ve had for £6 :)

    In the morning we took a taxi back to the airport to collect our rental car- from the craziest man. He thought it was okay at 7am to blast Romanian music, drive ridiculously fast, repetitively flash his lights at anyone in his way... and all the while scrolling through Facebook and whatsapping his friends. Bizarre. (See photo) I was happy to be getting out that car and having Stephan do the driving for the next few days.

    Leaving the stressful city behind- we headed north to Braşov, passing a few fairytale Romanian castles on the way. First stop- Peles Castle which was beautiful and surrounded by lovely autumn trees. Cute little market stalls lined the way there too where we could taste some local sweets!
    After a quick lunch and power nap in the car, we got back on the road towards Bran Castle- famous as being Dracula’s Castle, in Transylvania. We wandered around there for a while which was nice and worth the visit!
    Best part of the day has to be the stunning views though. The mountains are incredible and so different surrounded by all these lovely unique Romanian villages.

    Staying in Braşov - Another lovely hostel tonight with a very friendly welcoming! We were recommended a local place for dinner which was amazing!! It’s called “La Ceaun” meaning “the cauldron”. Very home comforting granny style dishes - good bowl of soup and a mushroom pie for me, spicy cabbage rolls with polenta for Stéphane! And we had our first try at Romanian potato bread and red wine! Delicious. Stéphane finished the night off with a shot of wild pear palinca and then we went for a stroll around the city at night. Seems to be a lot going on here! Could definitely stay longer!
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  • Day192

    The train stopped so many times and we don't know why. They must have been scheduled though because we arrived on time.
    Out we popped and straight into maccas - the only reliable place you can trust to be open at 6am.
    Will was starving because we didn't have a proper dinner.
    The look and thought of their breakfast menu made me feel ill so I skipped. I nibbled on Wills chips.

    We caught a taxi to the airport and after an argument for the price down to 60 lei from 80. It should have been 30 ..
    the problem is we can't really decide to get out and get a new taxi cause our stuff is in the boot and he could be a real ass about it which is better to just avoid.
    He refused to use the meter because of the traffic - to be fair it was pretty bad lol.
    Still, taxi drivers as a species are pooheads.
    Made it and found our hire car place.
    They decided they don't take debit only and credit cards yada yada so we had to upgrade to the top insurance . More money gone ... wahh.
    Probably best though. Drivers be cray cray.

    We had to take a shuttle bus out to our car. Nice little hatchback thing. It will do the trick.
    I got the worker dude to write Peles castle into the gps because it decided it didn't like the English version - off we went!
    They are fucking crazy. Cars just jump out of no where.
    We drove for about an hour an a half to reach stop 1 - Peles castle.
    We had to pay 15 lei for parking - boo and then walk up a hill - bigger boo

    But wowey! Ok so it's more of a palace than a castle but Hooley Dooley! The most intricate and sublime design yet! A masterpiece.
    It's really new though - it the summer residence of the first king and queen of Romanian which was late 1800's to early 1900's.
    The castle has a bloody lift for heavens sake - not as authentic in age and "history" as the others but still - WOW.
    So we decided to pay the 7€ each to see inside the first level but we skipped level 2.
    Our basic tour (which was really hard to find because of the lack of signage) took us to the reception hall and maybe 10 of the 150+ rooms.
    Beautiful beautiful beautiful.
    It cost 8€ to take photos so I didn't. (Well not many 😝)
    Made it back out and had to take off our shoe protectors we had to put on before entering.
    We would have liked it better though if we didn't have to go around with the tour guide. 1. She was a bore and 2. She didn't say anything that interested us - only what countries things were made in and what style.
    Only interesting piece of info was that the king and queen had 1 daughter who died when she was 4. They then adopted prince Ferdinand who became the 2nd king.

    I told Will I want my library room in our future house to look the same as the palace one 👍🏼👍🏼👍🏼 easy peasy.. heh

    The gardens were lovely too. Picturesque. I could just imagine people in gowns around the garden.

    I bought some raspberries of a gypsy lady on the walk down the hill and they were yummy.
    This section of Romania felt like Romania.. it was brown? Not dead but sort of like had the feeling of a ski resort? I doubt that makes sense but yeah. Loved it!

    We then put Bran castle into the gps and off we went.

    When we got there we had to find parking which was surprisingly easy.
    We had lunch at a local inn there which Will really enjoyed. He got soup in a bread bowl.
    We then had full bellies so we walked to the castle. This one didn't have the same option as the other one where you could just walk around the outside and not go in so we had to pay.
    35 lei each and then We paid an extra 10 each to see the torture museum. We figured it's Draculas castle so what a good opp to see some gore.

    So, the castle has been done up too much to have an old feel but it still had a lovely courtyard. Inside was mainly the set up from when some royals spent time there. In other rooms it had info on the creation of Dracula and pop culture.
    It wasn't the best but we loved the torture section. We needed help finding it but oh lord. It had some terrifically horrific stuff. It was the most extensive collection I've seen in the one spot before.
    There was one where they hold you upside down so all the blood goes to your head. They then spread your legs and saw you in half but because of your bloods location you stay conscious and alive for a long time.
    The spiked mummy sarcophagus thing was gruesome. Ive seen it in so many movies but never one in life. It could take 3 days to die inside 😐😐😐😐😐
    All the items had great English explanations next to them so that was awesome.
    We then left the castle and went around the side to take some Dracula pics 🤓😎

    The torture museum, not the castle was worth the $$

    We then drove to Brasov to the hostel - we got so lucky with parking! Near miracle but we got one for free!!!!! 😋
    We left our big bags in the car and only took our small backpacks.
    We checked In and put stuff in our locker before we walked around and went to the supermarket.
    We went past the black church, through the main square and saw the Brasov Hollywood sign. The main square is actually really really nice. Brasov has an old great feeling. I can't really figure out why I like places and dislike others but this was a great spot.

    We weren't hungry so we went back to the hostel before going back out for dinner later.
    There were 2 Aussies we talked to and got some tips for Montenegro and France from.

    We took our shoes off and stuffed then immediately in the locker because they smelt SO BAD!!!!!!!!🤢😷😷 it's because they got wet the other day.

    We booked our hostel for Turkey and are going to stay 4 nights instead of 3 because the difference in flights to Serbia differed by $200 for one day.

    Unfortunately as it would turn out... Istanbul has 2 airports and we are flying into the one that's far away.
    We are going f to get a private pick up for 60€ because the shuttle bus doesn't take us the whole way and is 20€ p.p 😒😒😒😒😒😒😒😒😒
    Stupid turkey. Lol
    My bad .... again. Lol
    I triple checked Serbia before booking - they only have the one airport lol.
    We have booked a Bnb for 7 nights because we can pull put head in and try save and Emily from work is also going to be there 😁😁😁

    We both showered because we stunk haha
    Our room was super spacious and our beds comfy :)
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  • Day193

    Shocking, I didn't want to get up. Only animals can make me rise... so I did. I got up.
    The hostel had free breakfast so we helped ourselves then walked to the car and got on the way. It was about a 40 minutes drive to the liBEARty bear sanctuary. (The bricks for bear people) we had trouble finding the entry because it was an illegitimate street but after passing straight by it the first time - we found it.
    It was 40 lei each to go on an English tour which was totally, 200% worth it.
    We had about a 20 minute wait before our tour started - a solid 30 people were waiting with us.
    Found out it also costs 55 lei to take photos which is an outrageous $16 but ONLY if you use a camera - not a phone wooohooooo!!!

    Knew i was going to be a loser and cry at some point because before we even entered I read one sign that said "it's not a zoo, it's a sanctuary so you may not see us but we finally have the chance to be free" and my eyes stung.

    Our guide could speak English quite well so that was a great start - he told us the rules then led us to a room to watch a 7 min video about the sanctuary
    Had stingy eyes during the doc too.
    It talked about the abuse of bears and how they were used for entertainment. The sanctuary opened up in 2005 inspired by Maya the bear who didn't make it. She was in such a bad state she self mutilated and ate her paws. She died in the founders arms.
    In 2007 the laws changed in Romania and a lot of bears were saved and taken away from entertainment pits in tourist areas.
    Romania has about 40% of all of Europes bears - apparently not because they are plentiful but because everywhere else has few.

    Ok so after the video we saw Maya's memorial and next to it a cage that one of the bears - Opi, lived in for 12 years.
    They have a variety of bears in the sanctuary... ones that have suffered true horrors like Opi and other that have been wild bears but started to go into human areas - one of the bears actually caught a train 😂😂😂😂😂😂 it had to be tranquilized and taken away from humans.
    Opi is rarely seen and chooses to feed when people arnt on tour.
    They only do 3 tours daily in the morning to make sure the animals arnt stressed.
    Others come close to the fence to eat during the tourists hours so they could be seen.

    The sanctuary currently has 98 bears - we saw 20!!! So an awesome amount.
    After bear 1 we saw bears 2, 3 & 4 - a mum with 2 cubs 😍 she was a wild one.
    Max the bear was who we saw next. Max is blind - he had needles poked through his eyes.
    He also had his teeth and claws removed.
    Humans all deserve to die, We are the worst.
    This was all done intentionally so that when people took photos with him it took an element of the danger away.
    He seems quite content now.

    Next we walked to a big big big big enclosure - can't remember how many hectares but a solid chunk - 5 more bears were near the fence feeding.
    Apparently in the wild there is only one bear every 20 square kilometers but because they are provided with enough food they live in peace (mostly)
    It's a real high tech place - they have cameras everywhere so they know if a bear is sick but also have a 24/7 live stream on YouTube.
    The organization has agreements with supermarket chains to give them the expired food to feed the bears. It still costs $50,000 a month to run everything.
    The bears were eating chicken and one was munching on a bread roll haha
    We walked past some deers who we learnt will never be bear food 👍🏼👍🏼👍🏼lol
    I also saw my first ever wolf! So cool! They have 6 on the property - a zoo shut down and they had nowhere to go.

    We saw a few more enclosures - they have only have had 1 bear get pregnant in the park - normally they castrate the bears before they reach sexual maturity but this particular male reached it 2 years early so...

    She and her cubs were in a smaller enclosure to keep the cubs safe cause the other bears would attack them - the cubs will go back into the wild.

    We both actually had such a terrific time! A great great organization!

    We left feeling like time well spent and drove to sighisoara *
    It took 2 hours - it was a nice drive - full of more lunatics though. The side of the road is covered in memorials. I would have seen 35+ today. We saw so many near accidents it was frightening.

    The what I presume to be Romani settlements are so cool and just scream ROMANIA.

    A few cool castles on the way and when driving into sighisoara it too was an awesome sight.

    Vlad was born here and it was a halfway point so seemed a good time to stop for lunch.

    We didn't walk up the hill to the house (now resturant) but still could see it.

    Drive drive drive onto Cluj - romanias second biggest town. So far not impressed - granted I haven't seen anything but eh.
    Our hostel is nice though and we are the only ones in our room YAYAYA I CAN PICK A BOTTOM BUNK 👏🏼👏🏼

    Forget to mention Will did the most beautifully genuine laugh today and it was hilarious.
    It was his reaction to the speed camera the gps spent along time warning us about.
    It was completely rusted over.
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  • Day194

    Good sleep.
    Woke at 9:30 for the free breakfast. People had already smashed the Bread and jams but we got some cereal :)
    We packed and left.

    We really should have gone to the city centre to see cluj but the photos weren't very enticing - it would have been a 4km round trip and we just couldn't be bothered lol.

    In the car currently 1.5 hrs in to the 4.5hr drive.
    It's not a very scenic route so far. Very flat and boring.
    We did stop at a petrol station to fill up and got bacon flavored chips which were awesome hahah

    They have so many roundabouts like England it's so stupid - especially the ones on the highways!!!!

    Haven't seen any prostitutes today - yesterday we saw maybe 10 all up standing on the side of the roads.
    We were lucky enough to see a car drive past and actually pick one of the girls up 😂

    Nothing really exciting happened until we finally started to drive down transfagarasan road. A very famous route.
    Top gear did an episode on this road - it was ordered to be built by the dictator dude so that military personnel could cross the mountains quickly if there was an invasion. The official death toll is forty but apparently hundreds died building it from many reasons but 1 being untrained in how to use dynamite.

    The autumn leaves were just incredible. Such strong Red, orange yellow and greens. Even a few purples.
    The road is ridiculous and can only be done at like 30-40km max an hour because of the bends. Some are practically U - turns.
    Near the beginning we pulled over and had some sandwiches for lunch. Wills peanut butter to bread ratio is ludicrous.

    We started at the bottom of the mountain and around halfway had the most wonderful view of the rest of the mountain we still had to climb covered in snow. We got out at a few designated photo spots to try take photo only the phones couldn't properly capture it and the sun was in a crappy place.

    There was suppose to be a fabulous waterfall - we found it but it was nothing special - definitely not worthy of a dot on the map.

    Will threw a snowball at me the dick lol.
    And so began the cliff climb.

    We got a reasonable way up before IDIOTS blocked our path. It took an hour to get 100m even with 2 police helpers because everyone doesn't care about others and just park on the road to go take photos. People kept trying to overtake and headbutting into other cars - it was just disastrous . Will was fuming. I have never seen such disorganization on a road. At first we thought the hold up was because someone had gone of the cliff or something because the queue was so long. Nope, just people being wankers.

    Finally got through the carnage and got back into the beautiful mountains but now going down.

    We drove and drove and finally found our hotel - we are about 1/4 of the way through the road and will finish it tomorrow.

    Our hotel is an expensive $75 for the night but there was no other option. Sneaky buggers.
    Our room is fine.
    We had a 3 hour nap then went to the resturant for dinner. It was shit lol.

    Back in the room and now back to bed 😁😁😁
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  • Day195

    We got to sleep in because our hotel didn't include free breakfast so we had no motivation to get up haha

    Left just before checkout and got back on to the Transfagarasan highway.
    The leaves had turned much more noticeably orange in one day.
    Ahhhh so pretty.
    We drove past a huge lake but the trees blocked our view. I always feel guilty that I can look but Will can't so I almost subconsciously only allow myself to see what he can.
    We made it to the Poenari castle - Vlad the impalers real castle unlike the Bran castle.
    It's just ruins now but it was 1480 steps to reach the top.
    That didn't include the 100 steps before the start line either.
    Ohhh the buuuurrrrrn.
    There I was thinking we were making excellent progress and well over halfway when suddenly we reached the 1/3 notification sign 😳😳😳😳 oh man.

    I did better than Will. still, was putting on bit of a brave face to prove a point 😝😝 hahahaha I definitely struggled!
    There was only 2 benches the whole climb up which I think is a bit silly considering how many people do it of all walks of life. Some of the oldies were so sweaty!

    Made it to the top and it cost 5.80 lei each. Bit annoyed because i purposely tried to find info about cost last night and there was no indication of a fee.
    Lucky Will had his wallet. I would have lost my shit if we climbed all that way to be denied entry!
    Not jealous of the ticket guy who has to climb the stairs every day to get to work..

    Got in - more stairs... and then found 2 mummies on spikes. Such a gruesome way to go... 😓😓😓😓
    The castle was only small and mainly just some walls left but the view was awesome! Took some pictures then headed back down.
    I think we arrived at a good time because truck load of people were now on the paths.
    And when we reached the bottom no more car spots were available.

    We kept driving and turned off the pretty road and started to drive through villages again.
    Damn horse and carts always blocking the road.

    We were so hungry as it was about 2pm by now and still hadn't eaten anything so we stopped at a street corner store for nibbles.

    Drive drive drive. So many doggies. They seem to know when to cross the street though.

    Drive drive drive - finally made it to our hotel.

    The front gate was closed we were like uhhhh???
    Made some noise and finally a dude came out to get us.
    I told him we had a reservation and he looked so confused
    " we are closed today"
    HAHAHAHAH of course they are...
    no matter though! He let us stay woohoo!

    He couldn't take card though so we went out to have a proper breakfast/lunch/dinner and get money out.

    After 4 ATM's not working lucky ATM number 5 gave us money 🙌🏼

    We went back and grabbed our stuff from the car because we have to get up early tomorrow to get to the airport.

    We think we might have found a workaway in Slovakia on the snowfields - still in the early stages of questions but looks great if it works out.
    We will see what they say.

    We have just chilled and enjoyed having internet because the last few places have been crap.
    Caught up on the news and watched some videos :)

    Turkey tomorrow :)
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  • Day97

    "Travel isn’t always pretty. It isn’t always comfortable. Sometimes it hurts, it even breaks your heart. But that’s okay. The journey changes you; it should change you. It leaves marks on your memory, on your consciousness, on your heart, and on your body. You take something with you. Hopefully, you leave something good behind." - Anthony Bourdain

    As I walked through the streets of Bucharest on my last night, indulging my nostalgia by revisiting the same places I had frequented 2 months previously with three of the best friends I made on the entire trip, I kept thinking over the above quote. I finish this trip both physically and emotionally exhausted, but despite the pain, tiredness, missteps and frustrations, I wouldn't have it any other way. True to my word, I left nothing on the table and tasted life to the fullest, I grew as a person, I was rewarded for saying yes to dubious opportunities, I made and lost friends from every corner of the world and I pushed my limits and, in doing so, gained new perspectives and confidence in my own capabilities and the world that I didn't know know were possible.

    Despite my early setbacks, my feet went further than I ever thought was possible, managing to walk the Theth-Valbone hike, not once, but twice in two days, was a massive personal achievement and something I have taken a lot of personal pride and confidence from. Backing myself to jump trains in southern Hungary, exploring Buzludzha solo and pushing Lada Gaga's limits with Han, while dubious decisions to say the least, gave me a renewed sense of personal strength and reminded me that nothing ventured is nothing gained. More than anywhere, Iran renewed my belief in the fundamental goodness of humanity and the importance of being humble in ones unearned and unwarranted privilege and the vigilance required to keep radicalism in check. I was also acutely reminded that travel is about the people as much as the places and I leave behind a string of friendships, some fleeting, some hopefully permanent, but all of who added an extra dimension and pleasure to my journey. Travelling with Han was also incredibly rewarding, opening up possibilities that would have otherwise eluded me and I will always be in debt for her photography lessons and her emotional support and advice. Finally, finishing my trip in Romania was a good reminder that, at its best, travel is the gorgeous feeling of teetering into the unknown, a country that I had dismissed as nothing more than Dracula and gothic castle proved to be so much more than I could have imagined and provided everything I have ever asked for in a destination.

    So I end the trip feeling physically exhausted, but emotionally fulfilled and excited to see Cadie and be home again. I am far from perfect at the best of times, but I maintain that I am my best self while travelling. Therefore, the challenge becomes how to apply some of those qualities I gain while travelling, openness, acceptance, curiousness and adventurousness, and bring them home with me.
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  • Day96

    It's appropriate that I finish this trip in a country that wasn't even on my radar, but that has provided me with so much. Crossing the border from Bulgaria was strangely nostalgic as the language, currency and familiar signs took me back to mid June when, after a disappointing 2 weeks in Eastern Turkey, Romania gave me everything I could have possibly imagined - great food, great friends and great experiences. I had heard about Vama Vechia on that visit, consistently ranked by those that had been as their favourite place in Romania, but I never managed to get there. However, while I was planning my route through Bulgaria to Istanbul I noticed how close it is to the Bulgarian border and Varna. This was obviously meant to be, so I turned north instead of south and found myself in Vama Vechia, the counter culture capital of Romania.

    Vama Vechia is a tiny village right on the Bulgarian border and grew to prominence in the heady days of the 1960's and 70's as a safe place away from the authorities where intellectuals and hippies could go to speak freely and embrace the freedoms that were denied them back in Bucharest. While it has grown and become more popular, it still retains a lot of its original culture, feel and sensibilities. Anything goes, everyone is accepted and strongly egalitarian, meaning camping and bonfires on the beach, celebrities rubbing shoulders with dreadlocked hippies and bars for every social segment, taste or mood. It's still strongly Romanian, with multiple generations making the pilgrimage every summer.

    I was there for the final weekend of the season, which was surreal as huge crowds partied on the beach to numerous free concerts playing everything from Albania rap, folk music to techno and bonfires made from the beach bars that were being torn down on the Saturday night. However, by my final night I was the only guest in my hostel, the beach was mostly empty and the majority of shops and bars having been dismantled or shuttered, all in 4 days. This change of pace was fine by me as I continued my wind down and spent my time between swims at the beach, afternoon naps and meals at my favourite fish restaurant on the beach, which only sold the fish they had caught the night before, simply grilled on big open air charcoal hot plates. It was a serendipitous end to an amazing trip, one that has shown me the most incredible natural, built and human beauty, while reminding me of the ugliness, conservatism and fear that can so easily be brought to the surface manipulated and abused.

    The more I travel the more it becomes clear that there is so much to be learnt from each other and so much joy that can be gained from leaving your own comfort zone and actually talk to people rather than listen to those trying to manipulate you. The kindness and generosity of strangers, both local and foreign remains the most enduring of all lessons learnt on the road. Being surrounded by a self selected group of like minded travellers also helps. While I met American backpackers from every social strata, demographic and background, I didn't meet a single Trump supporter. Same for British and Brexit. Same for Aussies and One Nation. This is not a coincidence - seeing beyond the headlines, propaganda and noise to be drawn to travel in Eastern Europe, the middle east and the Caucasus effectively filters out a lot of ugliness and made the last few months a nice reassuring bubble in which to exist, where you could actually dare to believe that maybe we can just all get along.

    Or maybe Vama Vechia has just gone to my head..
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  • Day183

    4am alarm and taxi man arrived at 4:30. It was a fancy pants taxi. No wonder it was so expensive.
    He got us there so early the airport wasn't even open.
    At about 5 they opened the door - you needed your passport and plane ticket just to enter the airport.
    We checked in no issues and went through to our gate.
    Wait wait wait - got on the plane.
    It's a 3 hour journey to Paris.
    Sooooo tired. How tired? I COULDNT REMEMBER WHERE TO PUT THE TOIELT PAPER AFTER I WIPED - I actually stood up to look for a bin before I turned around, saw the toilet and remembered it goes in the bowl.

    When we rocked up to Paris I was surprised by how many Air France planes were there.
    We were in France... 🤦🏼‍♀️🤦🏼‍♀️🤦🏼‍♀️🤦🏼‍♀️🤦🏼‍♀️🤦🏼‍♀️

    When going through the french customs they got cross because I didn't take my kindle out of my bag.
    I have never had to take it out this whole trip.
    Whatever I got through ✌🏼

    We had to run and barely made it to our next plane.

    Some dude was in my window seat and I wasn't about to give that up lol
    I told him it was my seat but he didn't really understand so I got the worker to tell him in french - he moved :)

    I slept a good chuck of the journey - its 3hrs as well. On Both planes we were given food plates. Not the best but semi passable.

    Arrived in Romania and it was chaos. No organization at all !! No lines, just clumps of people trying to get through customs.
    I actually got a well inked stamp for a change woo!

    And so began today's little drama... 😂😂😂😂😂👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼🤦🏼‍♀️🤦🏼‍♀️😒🤘🏽

    Our luggage didn't make it onto the flight and is still in France.

    Off we went to make a luggage claim.

    There was another dude who came from Morocco- his bag didn't make it either.

    We had to answer the most ridiculous questions.
    The dude did not understand how much stuff is in our bag - he was like describe the items inside , ermmmmm???
    I think the name tag on my bag, travel strap they out on with the code and description of my colour compartment bag things inside are going to be more helpful in identifying my bag that "inside is a blue shirt"............ oh! And a green shirt..........
    They will take 1 - 2 days to get to Romania. As compensation they have given us a white shirt 🤙🏽🤙🏽🤙🏽🤙🏽
    Good job guys 👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼
    They will drive them out to us for free but there may be an issue with phones and contacting us to let us know they are coming - will sort it tomorrow. If we must I'll just go back to the airport to get them.

    We left the airport with just our backpacks and got in a cab - he was honest and we didn't even need to ask him to put the meter on.
    It took 45 mins to get there - lucky it goes off distance and not time.

    Our Bnb dude was outside and waiting for us and took us up to the apartment.
    It's so nice 😭 YAY PRIVATE SPACE!

    We chilled for a bit then walked to get groceries.
    It was normal, rather than cheap prices.
    Came home and made nachos. We would have gone with tacos but couldn't find shells.

    The shower pressure is shit but other than that I'm very happy here.

    Romania is lovely so far. YAY EASTERN EUROPE

    We are watching nat geo wild :)

    Oh with our free shirt we also got some comforting cream (😂)inside our pencil case bag 🤘🏽
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  • Day184

    We slept til midday 👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼
    I had several alarms set up to check to see if the airport had emailed me.
    I had a shower and of course one came in while I was showering - it said along the lines of "your address was incomplete so we couldn't deliver. 😒
    Annoyed because if they had messaged to say "leaving now" as they said they would we could have met them our front because they did find the apartment block..
    whatever. We decided that even though it would cost us money and time it was easiest to just go back to the airport to get them.
    We walked to the street and found a taxi. Of course it was the most expensive company 😒😒😒 it cost $20 to get to the airport but was quicker than yesterday.
    When we arrived we didn't know what to do... we couldnt go back through the airport because of security so we asked one guy who led us to a phone and disabled a number then left - no one answered so we just kept standing there. We asked heaps more people for help only they didn't speak English :(
    I went to the info desk and they gave me a different number to try - no one answered that one either. 😖😖
    We just started Dialing numbers - 30 mins passed and we got hung up on 5 times - Will seriously frustrated by now.
    I got onto the wifi and email came through saying to come tomorrow because our bags weren't at the airport..... 😡😡😡😡

    We kept ringing numbers and finally someone answered and came out to get it.
    We had to sign in at a security check point.
    We went back to the same place as yesterday and got quite cranky because everything they said we should have done ie ring them - we said we told the guy yesterday we couldn't do and he said he had noted that down. They were like "oh....." 🤦🏼‍♀️🤦🏼‍♀️🤦🏼‍♀️
    They then focused on the address not being valid but had nothing to say when I said the taxi driver managed to find it....
    Basically one chick rang the delivery guy and arranged for our bags to come. We had to wait 30 mins but we were so fine to do that. Just relived they were coming and we didn't have to make another trip out.

    We got taken to the delivery bag and got our bags 😭😭🎉🎉🎉🎉👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👍🏼

    Got in another taxi and came home.
    So impressed with the driver - one look at the address and off we went - no gps- very old school.

    Got home, dumped our stuff and went to buy tacos 🌮

    Came home and cooked 🤤🤤🤤

    We downloaded the final 2 episodes of game of thrones - watched one together then trailed off into our own stuff.
    I caught up on the bachelorette and he watched some documentary.

    We plan to go on a walking tour tomorrow which I'm pretty keen for.
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  • Day186

    Woke up to the front door opening lol
    Some lady popped her head in then panicked and said "sorry housekeeping" then quickly left.
    We were like ehhhhh ok? Lol

    Woke up - nearly 1 hehehheeh
    I emailed dad to organised Skype for the following day and he actually replied 😱😱😱
    We were able to organise a skype date then and there 👏🏼 mum was high and probably won't remember though...
    had to hang up because time was moving fast and our tour was starting in an hour and we hadn't looked up where to go.
    Pretty easy - straight down the road for 1km
    We were the first there but the guide was waiting.
    She had great English #winning

    Waited for everyone then we started...
    First stop was 30 meters away from the fountain we started at - she pointed down the boulevard to point out parliment.
    Parliament is Bucharests biggest attraction. It is the 2nd biggest building in the world coming in behind the pentagon.
    It already looks freaking massive but It also goes 90m below the surface. Apparently top gear did an episode racing through their tunnels hahah

    They had a dictator and he is the one who built the building and the surrounding boulevard. He was sentenced to death after being a dick.
    😆 my enthusiasm on documenting every bit of history through this is fading ..... go google the dictator because it is interesting. 👍🏼👍🏼

    Apparently a lot a lot a lot of artists come do concerts and call them Budapest and it pisses them off hahah

    We then walked to a church where people got crowned. Romania had 3 sections and this was for what sounded like the Velakia section.
    There was also a white building behind us that is now a resturant where some document got signed - emancipation from the Ottoman Empire maybe?
    She dumped so much info and didn't always clarify things so not sure.
    She had lots of great picture cards showing us the things she taught.
    Like what things use to look like etc.

    Next was a statue of Vlad the impaler. This history lesson I found to be the most interesting. Despite him being aweful they still view him as their forefather - a letter from him to someone is the first record which mentions Bucharest "he signed our birth certificate"
    He impaled a lot of people... such a horrendous way to die. Could take 48 hours.
    He lined the streets with 200 men as a warning to the bigger army approaching.
    What a loon.

    We then went to the museum and posed in front of a statue that everyone hates. It was silly but I kinda liked it lol. It's a man holding a dog with big boobs.
    Nearby was the palace of bank which was a lovely building.
    Another Aussie dude was on our tour and we chatted to him at our mid tour break at GLORIA JEANS 😭😭😭❤️❤️ I was so excited. Starbucks sucks.

    Next was a little monastery. Goodness me churches are much more beautiful than mosques.
    When the dictator dude built the boulevard 40 churches were destroyed. Some of the remains were in the courtyard.
    8 of the churches were saved and literally moved on a cart and tracks.
    Next we walked to the university square where she talked about communism and the communist dude again 1984-89.
    Lots of people have died in the square - it was and still is used for protests.
    We were gonna give 30 Lei but the people before me all gave 10 so I kept the extra 20 hahaha so all up we have about $3 👊🏿

    Our house is really close to the university square so we walked home - I have about 2 weeks of a plumbing block to relieve- and so I did ✌🏼✌🏼✌🏼✌🏼✌🏼
    We went out for dinner then came back home - we watched game of thrones and did some base planning for our Romanian plans.
    Just relaxing and it's great.
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You might also know this place by the following names:

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