A return to Pantuflas El Grande

Trip Start Jul 29, 2010
Trip End Jun 30, 2011

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Monday, December 6, 2010

This weekend held a return to my favorite Eastern European puppy, Pantuflas El Grande. His picture is posted in my first Hungarian FB album if you haven't seen him yet. He's adorable, and he's now a permanent resident at our office in Cluj having his own house and his own food jar. I stuffed sausages in my pocket from the breakfast buffet at my hotel to feed him this morning. I can only imagine how I smelled when I got into our branch manager Horia's car, but I'm told he refuses anything but people food so I felt like I had to oblige. And apparently along with growing into his big ears, he has grown quite moody in his older age. He is now a bit fickle with who he chooses as his friends, so I had to make sure I tipped the balance in my favor. He bit a customer who was visiting the other company's office recently, and he chases the cars in the road trying to bite the tires. He's protective of his domain and he's quite a character. I still wish I could take him home, but I get the sense that he's happy. I wish all of our offices had resident puppies.

I'm back in Cluj for work for a few days, and it's been a good trip. Horia took me to Sighisoara, which is supposed to be the birthplace of Dracula this past Saturday, and it was really a beautiful little town in the mountains. The buildings are very colorful, they have a pretty church and it's just quaint. I went shopping with a couple of the girls on Sunday, and that was fun too. Cluj itself is lit up and decorated for the holidays, and it's really pretty.

Romania still reminds me a bit of Mexico. The people are super friendly and warm, and there are lots of stray dogs running around. Two of my favorite things =) We actually have someone working here for a couple of months from Austin; he's originally from Mexico, and he said recently that Romania reminds him of home so I guess there's something to my assessment.

The weather has been pretty unpredictable. It rained and snowed on Saturday but is supposed to be 60 degrees later this week.

I have spent the better part of a week feeling alternately sad and then mad at myself for feeling sad when I'm blessed with this experience. I think seeing the Christmas lights and everything just made me a little homesick. But I decided that I was going to stop loading mad onto sad, and just sit with the sadness for a second to let it do what it had to do. Now I feel better =)
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Laurie on

I remember the year I didn't come home for Christmas and how just the smell of cinnamon made me super homesick.

I love Romania! I went hiking in Sinia, which is not far from where you were! I also went to Brasov before heading to the black sea. I love reading about all your experiences!

deb on

Sounds like our weather patterns. One day snow, the next 60 and sunny. I wish I was there to see it all with you. It's okay to be sad, it makes the good moments even better. Love you!

Jane on

You are one wise cookie.

deb on

We are all wise cookies. ;)

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