Thanksgiving break, during the road trip to Tennessee with my father, we began to naturally discuss plans for Christmas. I’ve been longing to spend a Christmas in Romania for years since I was little, but I never thought it would actually come to happen. A conversation with my mother, emails to professors, and hours of flight-stalking later, I bought a ticket with a date set for a week after.. I couldn’t believe it. Reality didn’t even sink in really until I arrived at the airport in Budapest and saw my aunt and uncle who were waiting for me. The week before that was packed hour to hour as my schedule was filled from the moment I woke up until the late hours I would fall asleep. After four finals, ten various assignments, five choir concerts, and an entire house decorated for Christmas, I was ready to go spend Christmas in below freezing weather with my California wardrobe.
I had the sweetest of friends drive me to LAX, where I took off for my 14 hour flight to Zurich. From Zurich (pictured above), I had a layover which took me to Budapest. A four hour drive across Hungary and into Romania, we made it back and into the apartment where my mother grew up: home. I spent a day in Oradea and met up with Abby, remembering that months earlier we dreamed to spend the Christmas season together in Romania.
We walked around the Christmas market “ciocoalata de casa” in hand, listening to traditional Romanian carolers sing, watching young teenagers ice skate, little children running around, and families altogether enjoying the exuberant atmosphere vibrant throughout.