Here I am back in Romania for a few days.
I flew from Prestwick to Budapest then caught the 7 o'clock train to Sighisoara. It's supposed to get in at 5am, but for some reason none of the trains have been anything less than an hour late in either direction for months.
It was a beautiful morning and Alin's smiling face, even at that time in the morning, was truly welcoming.
Although there were some odd bits of business to be done, the real reason for this particular short visit is that I personally have to sign for the EU subvention payments for our land here.
And before 15th June, which only emerged after my last visit.
We had been told that Alin could sign as my proxy/power of attorney, but in the event, no one was very sure, and rather than lose out on a handy sum I decided I'd better get back and make with the signature. And the stamp. And the endless other signatures and stamps.
Still, by about noon we were through and spent some time going over the most recent land purchases.
What is becoming clear is that we need more and more maps of different areas and different types. All these are held in the Primaria ( Town Hall) and Vassily is in charge of them. So when we presented ourselves there yesterday afternoon, Vassily looked at his watch.
" The Mayor says I have to stop work in 20 minutes"
" That's OK then."
"Not at all. You will have to come back tomorrow."
I didn't quite follow this, but Vassily dropped a huge wink to Alin and ushered us out of his office.
Needless to say the Mayor and his wife had laid on lunch for us, and, sure enough, twenty minutes later Vassily turned up.
You will know that the variety and quality of the wine I have to drink here is sometimes a bit of a trial, but yesterday the Mayor produced some white wine that was entirely a pleasure to drink.
So much so that by 6pm the only sober person was Alin - I know I'm a terrible trial to him on these occasions.
I'm sure I snored all the way back in the car, and certainly until about 3am - when I was suddenly wide awake. I hadn't checked my emails!
I didn't reply to any, only made a note of what I needed to do.
After all, it would never do to send someone complete gibberish.....