Friday, July 5, 2013

romania: day 1

After 24 hours of travel to the airport, on 3 planes through Newark, Zurich and Budapest and then a four hour drive across the border of Hungary into Romania, we finally made it to the village of Sintelec.

Not since our straight drives from Minnesota as a child, have I ever traveled 24 hours straight.  It'll wear you out!

It was odd to look at the landscape from Budapest to Sintelec.  I was expecting something totally different but the majority of the trip looked just like driving down Pike Road in Alabama, plenty of hay fields and cows.  There were a few stereotypical European houses mixed in occasionally.  As we got closer to Oradea it changed.

You could tell a big difference after we passed the border into Romania.  We saw many of what looked like abandoned factories and apartment buildings only to see lights on and cars parked around.  My mind immediately went to WWII and thought of the destruction of lives and property that must have gone on during and after during Communism with all too many repercussions that still cause effects today.

We drove through Oradea which looked like a pretty typical bigger city with gas stations, grocery stores and two different home improvement stores right across the street from each other.  There were roundabouts everywhere with very few stop lights.  The roads were under construction which we later learned is pretty much all the time.  There were potholes everywhere and places the workers were digging up to come back later and fix.  This causes drivers to have to maneuver around and therefore lanes are typically not stayed in. They have no issues with zooming in and out and around no matter how close the oncoming car is to you!

The countryside is absolutely gorgeous.  It's hilly and full of corn and wheat.  I've heard there are sunflowers as well.  We arrived at their newly built discipleship center around 8:00 Romania time 1 pm Georgia time on about an hour or so of sleep.  It has three floors.  The first is a kitchen and large area used for mission team meals, after school programs, discipleship classes and all manner of other things.

My first reactions are exhaustion which makes me spacy and quiet which doesn't help with my typical uneasiness of new places and people.  I'm praying tonight that I can wake up tomorrow refreshed and comfortable with my discomfort.

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