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This is not a blog which expresses instant opinions on current events. It rather uses incidents, books (old and new), links and papers as jumping-off points for some reflections about our social endeavours.
So old posts are as good as new! And lots of useful links!

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Dawdling in Dobrogea

We left Bucharest on Friday - first for Romania’s port city of Constanta where Daniela had a friend's christening....the little Dali hotel on a charming promontory in the heart of the old city the Greeks called Tomis gave us immediate access to the city's excellent art gallery which absorbed us for the Saturday morning....
This is an album of the paintings which I have posted on flickr -  about 150 paintings and a score of sculptures 

You get a sense of the city's charm with this panoramic video from the tower of one of the mosques – although the antics of their mayor has allowed the jewel of their Nouveau Art Casino to reach a state of decay which seems irreparable. "A  Patriot’s Romania" blog had a little comment about this – and about the town’s interesting religious traditions – which complements nicely this fascinating paper on Jewish architecture in the city

The meal which followed the christening was a rare opportunity for me to study Romanians en famille and I thoroughly enjoyed it......so much so that we were unable to attend the concert in the Art Gallery which was celebrating Night of the Museums…. 

We left Constanta early on Sunday reckoning that the 600 kilometre drive to Sofia was a bit much for one day and that a border crossing at Silistra on the southern bank of the Danube would avoid the 20 minute minimum wait on the old bridge at Russe which major repairs are causing.
New security checks are also causing delays but only 3 cars were in front of us at the Silistra check
But before then we had been charmed by the rolling hills and smart villages of Dobrogea (the grapes from the famous Murfatlar and other wines clearly bring in some cash); and the huge white memorial of Roman General Traian to fallen Roman soldiers a 1977 rebuild of which towers over the countryside. We passed the vineyards of the Ostrov wine but were unable to find any wine for tasting or purchase….  

There's a nice blogpost here about the Ostrov ferry from A Patriot's Romania

Silistra was sleepy – with a small mosque in its main street and didn’t detain us as we sped to Russe for the night...
I just managed to get to its art gallery – which had earned a black mark from me when I last visited it some 4 winters earlier…. 
This time it made more impact – thanks mainly to the conversation with one of its curators….But I didn’t remember seeing before the works of Radoykov (above) and Lazorov ….

And I'm now in Sofia - for the next week or so for the next stage of the dental upgrade and check-up with the dermatologist (for the shingles).






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