Sunday, February 17, 2008

Hells Yeah, I Have Pictures

This is going to be all higglety pigglety because I can't seem to move any of these pictures and I've already been on this computer for over an hour and I'm done. I tell you I'm DONE.
Currently, I am in Cluj Napoca after what has been a trying/wonderful/frustrating/okay couple of days. Here we go...try to follow along with the jumping around and such:
This is me in a stairwell of Corvin Castle in the small town of Hunedoara. This is yesterday (2/16).
Though a perfect BITCH to get to and surrounded by burned out nuclear plants and is an amazing castle built in the 1400s and it very well could've FALLEN out of Brahm Stoker's novel...if castles could fall out of novels. Here is Kansas in ANOTHER winding stairwell of Corvin Castle (of Castelul Corvinol). Almost the whole castle was open to the public and we did everything short of scaling the walls. But I might've tried it if my hands weren't frozen blocks of icy frozenness. Romania in February...I'm an idiot.We have yet to find anyone around that would be willing to take our picture in front of things, so we've just been doing it ourselves. Hence the "reeeeallly close to the camera" look that involves cutting off my lower jaw (which is good since it hides my giant travel zit). Look at that castle in the background. Is that fucking awesome or what? It's on a cliffside an everything. There's even a moat.
Did you hear me? I said a moat!
"Who gives a damn about a moat?" you say. Go ahead and scoff if you like...but it's an essential portion of any castle experience. I've seen my fair share of castles. But I don't recall any actual moats. I've seen dry paths and places where moats used to be...but never an actual water-filled moat. So shut up.
The night before was a bastard of a night. We left Sibiu around 5 and took a train to what we thought would be the closest town to Corvin Castle that would have a hotel. That would be Deva. So we went there. Well, sort of...the train stopped three minutes before it was scheduled to arrive at the station. We looked outside and couldn't see any signs and people were getting off left and right, so we got off too. As soon as the train started moving, we knew we got off at the wrong station. Thankfully we found a taxi to take us on to our destination, feeling like idiots the entire way.

On top of that, we couldn't find a frigging hotel. Let me tell you, there's nothing like wandering around at 10:00 o'clock at night in a strange and fugly city carrying 50 lbs of who the fuck knows what on your back and no hotel in sight.

We eventually found one...and our room looked like this:I couldn't tell you what era this was supposed to be from, but the bathroom door didn't close, there was hair all over the place, the "blanket" was goldenrod and there was no hot water coming from the sink.
But at least it had cable.
So...a little touristy advice. Don't go to Deva. Ever. Not ever.Rewind to that afternoon (2/15), when we were still in Sibiu. This is a door in Sibiu. A quaint little town with very germanic architecture where we were attacked with snow.
This is us waiting at the bus stop. Or rather, we're waiting at the bus stop with these people. I love that woman's hat on the left. Lots of women were these ginormous fur hats. It's so...unethical.
Anway, we're on our way out to the open air Astra museum, which the dude at the hostel ASSURED me was open.
So we took the bus out there. It dropped us in what looked like the middle of nowhere. We walked the grounds, it started snowing. We thought "hey, this might be pretty in the snow".
But it was CLOSED! Assholes. So we had to start walking til we could find a bus stop, having no idea when or if a bus would come. Here's Kansas waiting.The bus stop was by a cemetary, so I went in to take some pictures. Here it looks all calm and serene. And that's when the snow began attacking us. It was falling so fast, it was up to the tops of our shoes by the time we got on a tram. That serene cemetery was completely white when I left it.
We got back to the city (Sibiu) and warmed our toesies with a little coffee and sustinence and then went out and took a shitload of pictures...most of which refused to be copied onto this computer. Assholes.
See Kansas over there waving? Yep, that's him. There's a similar one of me in a square looking ever so slightly chilled...but it wouldn't copy over. Because it's stupid.Anway, I think you get the idea. Tomorrow is our last day in Romania. I've just made our reservations for Budapest and we'll have a couple days there gorging ourselves on foodstuffs covered in paprika. Because that's what a good tourist does.
I guess then it will be goodbye to the elegant Romanian trains without working bathrooms. Alas.

Now I must go make myself horizontal for a while. You can't even imagine the amount of goulash I stuffed into my person this eventide. But it wasn't my fault. It had potato dumplings. They had to know I'm defenseless against starches. Assholes.

I don't know how much more I'll be able to update in the next week. You might have to wait for the rest til I get back. I'll definitely post more Bran Castle pics, etc. then. I know, you're sad...but go eat a pint of Hagen Daas and get over it.

As for your blogs...I'm horribly behind. I've barely been able to read any. I promise to sit my jetlagged ass on a couch for a good full evening and catch up weekend after next. So this means that you better not write any half-assed crap so's you don't waste my time. It's valuable, you know.


17 keep(s) me blogging:

Gorilla Bananas said...

Your face looks surprisingly mature, as if you've been through life-changing experiences that have made you sadder but wiser. I think you guys need a touring song. How about "Jai Guru Deva Sucks" as the first line?

The Future said...

Wow, starch rules! Great castles, great food, what more could you ask for? Who needs a decent hotel room, reliable touristy advice or gloves on your ice cube hands, you silly girl? Actually should I read anything into the fact that NO ONE would take your picture? That is lame and very inhospitable. You did a pretty good job on your own though.

Sam, Problemchildbride said...

Castley goodness - yeehah! But what's with the bungalow tile red-roofing? It kind of detracts a bitty from the Gothic menace. They must have got a deal or something. From a bloke. With a van.

Does look a bit perishing though - you'll need every last molarful of these warming starches so be sure and ask for toothpicks.

Robert the Skeptic said...

Moats are really over rated, you know. medieval military strategists sold the moat idea to kings in the summer, got their dubloons and split. Winter comes along, the moat freezes and the marauding hoards walk across the frozen moat and pillage and loot. But that was already in your guide book, right?!

Seung said...

I'm still totally jealous. I mean seriously, a mote? C'mon! That's awesome! Totally worth all that snow and those crappy computers.

Rachel said...

Dont bother seeing my blog then. Ive got nothing but crap.

BTW, Im totally jealousing over the castle. I mean, wtf? The inner geek in me LOVES everything medieval.

AxAtlas said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
AxAtlas said...

You couldn't stay at the castle??? Should've scaled the walls too.

Kara said...

goranas - it's because i'm a week away from being 28. i'm beginning to look old.

future - that's WITH gloves on. winter is harsh. sunny...but harsh.

sam - gothic must battle communist era, i'm afraid. they try their best to exist side by side, but i'm afraid the skyline suffers.

dad - yes, right, of course. actually, the bridge was prolly their first means of crossing.

seung - this is true. you have humbled me. i will complain no more.

rachel - crap? CRAP? i'm so indignant, i'm not even talking to you right now.

ax - without working fireplaces, those rooms are COOOOOLLLLDDDD.

froelica said...

I like the pic of the rooftops. Makes me feel all gooey inside, and yet slightly cold and anxious in a good way. Good pictures do that.

Rachel said...

what? I was insulting MY OWN blog. Not yours! Unless the word "crap" offends you?

Then I beg your pardon.

Mary Witzl said...

Moats are great and I share your enthusiasm. In Tokyo, I worked at a school on Sotoboridoori, or 'Outer Moat Road.' I got such a kick out of that. Every time I find a moat here, too, I revel in it. Us unfortunates who have lived all our lives without moats know how to appreciate them.

And the great thing about crappy hotel rooms is that they give you wonderful stories to tell. Everyone will laugh with you over that place with the awful decor. If, on the other hand, you'd been to a lovely hotel with polished woodwork, freshly vacuumed carpets, and complimentary wine and chocolates, we'd all be out of here before you'd described two sentences' worth.

Sarah said...

Great pictures! The hotel room is less than alluring, but at least it's in Romania. I'm sure you remember us telling you about the one in San Francisco where we found a false eyelash behind the faucet in the bathroom. From a tranny, I'm sure.

Stinkypaw said...

Reading this I could feel that you were having a trying/wonderful/frustrating/okay couple of days. My husband is Hungarian and I haven't been yet, so can't wait to see your pictures and read about it! The Corvin Castle seemed really cool (in every sense of the word)!

Enjoy the rest of your trip and hopefully it will be warmer!

Jahooni said...

I think you look calm and relaxed. Why didn't you say that your honey bunches of oats is so dang cute? Does he have a brother? ;-)

Kara said...

rachel - that's right, you're in trouble for calling your blog crap.

everyone else - word.

Orhan Kahn said...

Ooer, more pictures, ftw.