Wide Awake in Wonderland

We’re only dancing on this earth for a short while

Oh for crying out loud October 8, 2008

I suppose I can just sleep when I’m dead. Good morning from Romania, where last night I got MAYBE two hours. Infernal snoring (more like choking with respect to the guy in the bunk above me), kept me awake and semi-livid through the night.

Thus, I was more or less fully conscious (as much as I can be on that little sleep) when my alarm went off super early this morning. I changed out of my pajamas and into my clothes under the blankets. Then I got up and drug my stuff out into the hall.

As I was cinching everything down, I glanced at my watch and wondered why I woke myself up so early, as I had done most of my packing the night before. However, it gave me some time to make some tea in the kitchen and play with the calico kitten that materialized out of nowhere (or that perhaps I hallucinated?)

I made some toast and looked at my watch again. It was now 5:55 am. The girl at the hostel said I needed a cab by 6:10 or 6:15 in order to make my 6:41 train to Bucharest. She had said to come wake her at 6:00 and she’d call one for me.

I decided to eat my toast and then go rouse her. As I crept into the room, she said something I didn’t quite understand. “Excuse me?” I asked. “It’s too late,” she repeated. “You missed it.”

I glanced at my watch. “It’s 6:02. The train is at 6:41.” I smiled at her.

She showed me her cell phone, “It’s 6:27. It’s too late. You missed it.”

So, that’s the long way of telling you that my watch managed to stop for the first time in 10 weeks, and for only 25 minutes. Nonetheless, long enough to cause me to miss the stupid train.

Who knows? Maybe that train is due to be overtaken by a band of gypsies (they sure do hate and fear them here) or hit by a meteor or just really, really late?

So, now instead of an hour and 15 minute ‘layover’ in Bucharest, I’ll have a three minute stopover. Sounds stressful. And considering all these trains are always late, kind of unlikely.

However, this little snafu did allow me to enjoy the company of a fellow hosteler I’ll call Stinky. If Stinky’s parents knew he’d grow up to be a 50-something man wearing only silk boxers and eating toast slathered in margarine on a Thursday morning in a hostel kitchen, all the while emitting an odor so foul that his table mate (me) couldn’t dream of eating, well, they might have just thrown in the towel and named him Stinky. Or maybe given him to the gypsies? We’ll never know.

Wish me luck, as I try to figure out how to get myself to Sofia…

http://www.europealacarte.co.uk/blog/2008/10/06/europe-travel-blog-carnival-6-october-2008/

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Things that go awry when you fail to read the fine print

All right, kids. Tonight’s post is going to be a bit abbreviated.

‘Why?’ you ask. Well, first off, tomorrow I am getting on the ‘local’ (i.e. stops at any field with more than five sheep or a petulant rooster) train from Brasov to Bucharest at 6:40 a.m.

And then – owing to Bucharest’s glowing reputation as the @$$hole of Eastern Europe – I head to Sofia, Bulgaria a mere two hours later . All told? SIXTEEN MOFO HOURS OF TRAVEL. The upside for you, loyal readers, is that I will have scads of time to share my deep thoughts (or not) and catch you up on my activities of the last few days. So long as Susie’s battery holds out, I’ll be typing it up. Anything to distract myself from the numbness in my butt.

The second reason for tonight’s brevity is what I’ve taken to calling Comaneci’s Revenge. Nothing against Nadia, but apparently Romania is one of those “don’t drink the water” countries. Oops.

Not sure how other people figure this kind of thing out, but I need to join that mailing list. I tend to operate on the ‘experiential learning’ model, which is fine so long as your digestive system doesn’t get a vote.