This might seem a little bit scattered for MOST of the post, but I promise it will get around to Romania stuff in the end.
I took the Megabus from Chicago to Blissfield tonight. For those who don't know, Megabus is kind of a discount inter-city bus line with some really great deals. However, sometimes you get what you pay for.
The day started off beautifully. I slept in a significant amount after a LONG week of staff training for summer day camp (more details to come in another post), did some laundry, ran some errands- normal "day off" stuff. I packed my suitcase and prepared to leave my apartment to head downtown and catch the bus. I glanced outside and thought how lucky I was that it wasn't raining- nearly every other trip I have taken back to Blissfield has been in the rain. I made it downtown, feeling really great about my impeccable sense of timing, and went to Walgreens to buy another bus pass. A man rushes in, grabs an umbrella, and cuts in front of me in line. I chuckle at his obvious lack of sense- I had just taken my sunglasses off! Silly man.
Three minutes later, it is raining harder than I thought possible. I am huddled under the overhang at Union Station, feeling grateful that I made it before I got too wet. I am a little drippy, but nothing serious. The rain lets up, and I proceed to walk to the bus stop. The Megabus is about 2 minutes late at this point- no big deal, right? I am still in a generally happy mood. Like a movie scene, the sky darkens and I neglect to head for shelter, mostly because I am stupid.
One minute later, I might as well be in a swimming pool. Except the swimming pool is filled with dirty rain water and trash from the streets and my clothes and my bags. And street signs are literally falling over from the wind and I am clinging to the bus stop. And 1.5 HOURS later, the Megabus shows up. And 2 HOURS later, we leave for Toledo. I am dripping wet, and the air-conditioning is on high, and I am coughing, and the Wi-Fi doesn't work, and the bus is filled with smelly people and going about 45 mph. And so I arrive in Toledo approximately 7 hours after previously being happy. And at some point, you just have to laugh.
What does this have to do with Romania? In my brain, just about everything is about Romania these days, so this situation is pretty obviously connected. For those who don't understand the obsession... allow me to explain.
I am wondering how many times I am going to "just have to laugh" in the coming year. Teaching is always an exercise in finding humor, and teaching English to Romanian children cannot be any less comical. Living in a new country presents issues of uncertainty and awkwardness. Speaking VERY LITTLE of the local language is certain to result in some kind of humor on a fairly regular basis, mostly at the expense of my inept brain and poor skills. Traveling through "underdeveloped" parts of Eastern Europe will probably not be too much different than waiting hours for an uncomfortable bus ride.
In short, I am anticipating a lot of moments where finding the laughter is going to be important...