Saturday, October 18, 2008

A Man's World

I'm back in Romania having swung through Balaton,Vizvar and Pecs in Hungary.
Balaton I could hardly see as it was so foggy, and the overnight stay was really quite spookey. Siofok is a summer resort town where everything clearly shuts before the end of September. I had great difficulty getting anything to eat, but ended up with an above average meal in the last restaurant that was still open.
It took forever to get toVizvar through the fog. I had thought that it might be good to own a cottage there but was a bit disappointed. If you lived in Pecs or Budapest, it would be fine for weekends and holidays, but there was really nothing there - and it's a long way from anything apart from the Croatian border. Good for smugglers I suppose.
Pecs was delightful - very Austro-Hungarian empire. I stayed the night in a hotel that still rang of hussars in beautiful uniforms clanking up the stairs. Next morning the sun decided to shine, so I was able to have a quick look round before heading back to Budapest to get the train. The lovers locks were quite extraordinary and strangely moving. I wondered if anyone ever went back to remove their padlock when a love affair cooled. I was delighted to see that Capitalism flourished here - there was a shop within a few meters that offered all kinds and sizes of locks. Weirdly, they all came with three keys. One for each lover - and the third? I have no idea.
Sighisoara had put her best clothes on for my arrival - it was warm and sunny.
Everything here is seldom to be taken at face value. For example, why would two men in their early 40s buy two pieces of land beside each other within a village at a vastly inflated price - and then ask to buy some of ours? I didn't give much credence to the story that they wanted to have a house each and they needed the extra land for a swimming pool or place for their children to play. I think it much more likely that they are planning a rather large hotel as the land has superb views to one of the most attractive fortified churches, with hills beyond. Property prices worldwide may not be looking healthy, but here in Romania something that could be bought for Eur 10-15,000 a year ago is now virtually unobtainable at Eur 30,000.
If all else fails at least that will be something to fall back on.....

1 comment:

Winchester whisperer said...

I was expecting to see locks of hair, not padlocks!