This week

I’ve arranged my programme here in such a way that I have most of today and all of tomorrow off. This is good because I am knackered. It has also meant that I wasn’t flapping when I had to wait an hour for my phone to be unblocked so I could use it here, and meant that I have had time to do boring stuff like change money, and also that I can wander round and relax a bit. Most importantly, it means I can have a lie-in tomorrow. Hooray!

The only (minor) gripe is that the TV in my hotel room doesn’t work. They did say yesterday that it would be fixed today, but they don’t seem to be in any great hurry to sort it out. It isn’t just laziness that I want the TV – it has been quite useful to watch the news programmes here, good for my language and also to have a clue what is going on in the world outside of my research. Plus in Bucharest a couple of days ago I woke up in the small hours and couldn’t go back to sleep, and having the TV on really quietly was as good as someone singing lullabies.

I’ve wandered round and noticed a few more changes. The flowers outside the Dumbrava department store are amazing (in the summer they were very lethargic and limp, they didn’t seem to like 40 degree temperatures any more than I did, but they’re looking great now), the Hotel at the bottom of my old road which was being renovated has now opened, large parts of roads which were building sites are now properly tarmacked (I’m sure that’s not how you spell it, but neither one ‘c’ nor two ‘c’s looked right), and for some reason the council seems to have stuck the same sign (showing it is a “Historic Building”) on every building, which is really rather spoiling them I think. And I can’t get used to the big stage not being in Piata Mare, there’s a big gap there now! Though the statue I always felt a bit sorry for* that was hidden right behind the stage is now fully visible.

* Yes I know it’s an inanimate object. I’m just soft.

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