Having just returned to Bucharest after what may have been the best weekend I've ever experienced, I'm working on not being upset. I knew that I needed to get out of the city for a bit, see some other parts of Romania, and visit with a friend that has become (almost) insanely important to me. I had no idea HOW much I needed it, though.
My train ride on Friday was absurdly long and boring. I know that some of this was the time of day (we left at 3:45) and some of it was purely anticipation, but I thought I was going to die. The first few hours of the journey were spent sitting opposite someone who could have played in the NBA simply because of the length of his legs. I eventually snuck into first class for about 45 minutes and got found out, and went back to my own train car. However, I didn't go all the way back to my seat, but settled into an empty grouping of seats and tried to enjoy the rest of the journey. I had about a million things on my mind, none of which were particularly pleasant, and so when we pulled into the station only 10 minutes late, I was intensely relieved. Dan (I figured the D~ bit should be up after the last posting) was waiting for me there and we got a cab back to his flat. We dropped my stuff off and went to wander around the neighborhood, which turned into a walk to the city center- Piata Victoriei and Piata Unirii. My heart nearly stopped beating in my chest, as it was so constricted by all the happiness. The night was beautiful, I was with someone I love spending time with, and we were standing in the middle of the most beauty I've seen in 7 weeks.
The rest of the weekend was filled with a lot of walking, good food (Chinese, even!), beautiful parks, an Orthodox wedding, soft-serve ice cream, chatting, enjoying the automatic reader on Dan's iMac, a smoky bar called The Dungeon, a man named N~ and a friend of Dan's that I might never figure out, a revalatory walk and talk, a song called "Fost Odata," employing Google Translation services to discover some things about my neighbors, a massive shopping center, American football, a beautiful hour in Piata Victoriei, and a certain amount of sadness on my part when my train pulled away at 10:40 on Sunday night. It was truly a magical weekend.
The details aren't really too important. What I do know is this: I learned some things about myself this weekend, and some things about the nature of beauty.
1. It is both good and necessary to spend time with people you care about.
2. I'm becoming more mature in certain aspects of my life that have always been a struggle for me.
3. Even if you are living in a place without a lot of percievable, easy beauty... it is still important to look for it. I can't go that long without it again. I'll look for it in the faces of my students or the correspondence from the States or the way this city is trying to better itself. I'll search for the beauty, even if it seems to be hidden. Maybe the difficulty, the struggle, will make it even more meaningful.
All of that being said, I'm going back to Timisoara in a little over 5 weeks to celebrate Thanksgiving. It's not a holiday here but we figured there are some things we just shouldn't give up. Plus, I really did have an amazing time.