Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy Day

Yesterday was easily in the top 5 of happiest days this year. I had been dreaming of owning some of Sven Nordqvist's books for a year, and now I do! I ordered them last month, and they went a long and curly way, from Sweden to Holland to Bucuresti to my trembling, expectant hands.

They exerted such a fascination on me when I first saw them in Sweden, that I just had to have them in my house sooner or later. I based stuffed creatures on the mucklor in the book, I drove my friends crazy with excited accounts of the silly drawings inside, I wished I had a cat like Findus... Is it very weird for a grown-up to be so excited over children's books?

But they are not just children's books, they are Swedish reading practice material! Så ska jag lära mig svenska och leka på samma gång :>

The appearance of the books in my house caused quite a stir among the population of Transylvanian mucklor, locally known as "mişumaci". Here is what happened:

Monday, March 1, 2010

Happy New Year!

Today Romania celebrates Mărţişor, my favourite holiday of the entire year! If you want to know what a mărţişor is, go here. It was all the more exciting since I haven't spent a 1st of March in the country for 5 years.

The weather knew exactly what it had to do today. After weeks and weeks of gloom and clouds and snow, I woke up to brilliant sunshine and temperatures of over 10 degrees. Yes, above zero.

As usual, the center square was filled with stalls selling spring flowers (the town smells lovely today) and little tokens tied with red and white string.
Unlike previous years, though, the offer was very disappointing: small range, high level of kitsch, very few genuine handmade products. I hope this is not the sign of a dying tradition, or else I'll take it upon myself to revive it next year!

The 1st of March also means snowdrops: the first delicate flowers of the season. Their awful smell (they smell like dirty communist train stations to me) doesn't cloud the happiness they bring. For those of you who have never seen a snowdrop, the "vase" is actually an eggcup :>
And this is me this morning, wearing the first Mărţişor I received. It was Dad who was quickest this year :)
Happy spring to the Europeans!
A plentiful autumn to the dwellers of the Southern Hemisphere!