Posted in Carmich Travel Journal

The Romanians are here!

Let’s do an imagination exercise today. Let’s assume that when we are born, we are in a bubble. It is like our own personal space, that we aren’t aware of. As we grow older and evolve, the bubble grows and allows us to break different boundaries. It’s basically a circle that allows us to accumulate knowledge, friends, experience and everything else we need in order to become rational humans. This is the simplest picture I could come up with. Now I will try to explain why I started with this introduction.

As a child of the 90’s, I can say I was pretty lucky to attend a school that has put a lot of value on great teachers. They were our role models and they gave more than 100% to make sure we loved their classes. Teachers gave us the idea, the resources and gave us the freedom to do our research and try to understand exactly how things work. That, to me, is what a great teacher is. That’s why I can still remember my first Romanian geography and history lessons. These were two subjects that made all of us, I’m talking about 35 pupils, focus and listen without breathing. We learned that being Romanian should be something we need to be proud of and never let anyone make us think otherwise. It was not difficult to do so, because the image that was portrayed made us love our country and everything about it. Legends, myths, fights and acts of bravery made us hope that one day we could defend our country in the same way our ancestors did. Our tall mountains, beautiful hills and plains, our Danube delta and the abundance of rivers, lakes and the Black Sea showed us that our country really had all the resources that it needed to flourish and become wealthy.

I’m saying this because we learned about the communism and all the bad effects it had on the people and the mentality, so we were hoping that one day Romania could bloom again. Now, for those of you who don’t know this, in December 1989 the communism ended, after a revolution started by the people who have had enough of the old regime.

The bad part of it was that some sort of a democracy was soon to rise, but with the same people of the past as founders… so, to make it short, nothing actually changed. There were small bits that made people believe they are free and made them trust the “new” political class. In reality it was just another way of suppressing the people and give them false hopes.

The year is 2015 and Romania is still not where it should be. Romania is like that new born I was talking in the beginning. It is still stuck in the same bubble and it doesn’t allow positive influences to come it’s way, it just attracts negativity and bad references.

Unfortunately, my country has received a lot of bad reviews over the past years. In the eyes of the world we are a country of thieves, liars and most of it, a country full of gypsies. I won’t even try to explain, but a simple google search will tell you where gypsies actually come from and what their origin is. There are good ones and bad ones and every country has them. In the end of the day, they are still people and sometimes, the way society handles them determines the way they react. I’ve had gypsy friends and they were more honest and friendly than other people I’ve met, but that’s a different story.

A few months ago I watched some videos, called “The Romanians are coming”… the links are here for all three episodes: Channel 4

I will not justify their actions, I will not comment on them, I will only say one thing. If you, as a person, would live in a house where you are not wanted and where people always talk badly about you, wouldn’t you try and live somewhere else? These people tried their luck and went outside their comfort zone, some of them returned back home, some of them moved somewhere else. The main thing is that they didn’t give up and they fought for what they believed in!

Romania is a country that still has to adjust to changes, it still has to struggle with all the negative comments that are thrown at it. It’s a country that slowly will grow and become what it can actually be, a home for us, the Romanians.

We are not all gypsies and not all gypsies are thieves and bad people. This remark is like saying that all dogs hate cats and can’t live together in the same place, but I’m sure a lot of you have both a dog and a cat in your house… did they kill each other?

Sometimes we really need to consider what we say and how we judge people and mostly, think about the repercussions and consequences of those words. A word thrown to someone when you’re angry can stab deeply and can cause wounds that will never get better.

I might be a bit melancholic because I left my country and I currently live very far away from it. I still return there with great love and respect and in my heart that place, Romania, will always be my home and I really believe that one day things will get better for everyone living there or abroad.

 Photo source: Map of Romania
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