Gettin’ Sighi With It

11 06 2008

Sighisoara, Romania

“Sighisoara (Sig-ee-shwar-a) can probably be seen in about a day.” That’s something that you would hear if you were going to visit this place. In fact just about everyone says it including myself and Gage. Heck you can ‘see’ Virginia Beach in a day, but most people like to get in the water and we wanted to dive into Sighisoara as well. The citadel that attracts so many tourist is located on a hill and filled with rough cobblestone streets and beautiful Transylvanian/German architecture. As the birthplace of Vlad Dracul one might expect it to be a bit creepier. Unfortunately for the Dracula-philes, even the cemetery here is beautiful and serene.

citadel from the clock tower shoemakers tower sighisoara cemetary

Gage and I decided to explore Sighisoara a bit deeper, so we signed up for a week at our hostel, Nathan’s Villa, and contacted a local named Leonie via Couchsurfing. That’s when Sighisoara got a lot more interesting. We met up with Leonie at her workplace (because we now assume that everyone can walk away from their workplace), Sighisoara Durabila. We ended up chatting with her coworker Hans who politely asked where we were from. When we said Charlotte, NC he insisted that we go to his home and meet his girlfriend, Sherry, because she was also from Charlotte. As my dad would say, this belongs to the ‘small world’ department. Five minutes later we were sitting at their kitchen table wide-eyed listening to Sherry explain that she lived only a few streets away from us in Charlotte. It was so much fun for everyone; Sherry enjoyed being able to talk fast and make slang jokes and we enjoyed hearing all of her awesome travel stories and relating a few of our own observations. She also told us more about Sighisoara Durabila and how they are working to save Sighisoara from over-development and a rather shady government. That sounded like a worthy cause so we ended up volunteering as helping hands for Leonie and Hans.

On Friday we headed up to the school at the top of the hill where we met Leonie and Hans. We spent the next two days preparing the ground for putting in benches, assembling the benches and planting flowers. After a week and half of sitting around being lazy it felt wonderful to actually get dirty (not just smelly) and accomplish something. Leonie and Hans were both so generous with their time and so patient with our American need to constantly be doing something. They even took us out to a great Romanian restaurant where Gage and I started our new addiction to red onion salad (add white vinegar, salt and pepper, and you’ll understand our fascination). Thanks so much to both of them for letting us help out with their green spaces and for being so easy to talk with. For more pictures, click here.

Sighisoara Durabila Sighisoara Durabila 1 Sighisoara Durabila 2

Sighisoara Recommendations:
– If you have heavy bags stay at Nathan’s Hostel. It’s a 5 minute walk from the train station, is clean and very spacious. If you want to be in the center of the citadel, Burg Hostel is your best bet, but it’s a 15 minute walk. And if you want to go really cheap, Hans and Leonie will let you Couchsurf in their Sighisoara Durabila office (there’s no running water, but they have methods:).
– Rustic (1 Decembrie Street) is probably the best Romanian restaurant in town. Get the Ciorba de Fasole in the bread bowl and don’t get any other side dishes. I assure you it is more than enough food.
– The best cafe in town is Cafe Julius (Morii Street just below the citadel) where you can get delicious cappuccinos, luscious desserts and even a descent Irish Whisky.
– Click here for a descent map of Sighisoara’s citadel.
– If you want to feel good about yourself and do some good contact Hans and Leonie via couchsurfing or through the contact info on Sighisoara Durabila’s website.

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5 responses

11 06 2008
Becca

Jen,

You and Gage continue to ‘Awe’ me. Best Wishes!

Becca

12 06 2008
Scott

Hey you two hope everything is going well. Romania looks very pretty, looks like you guys are having fun. Sorry I haven’t been able to check the site as much lol jk, Happy Late Birthday again Gage. Talk to you guys later.

Scott

13 06 2008
Kathy

Hey guys – I am lovin’ reading about your travels!! I get so excited when I see a Living Spree email in my in box. Know I’m in for some facinating stuff about interesting people and far off places. Look forward to hearing from you again soon!
Be safe. Love, Kathy

15 06 2008
Garrett Bryant

you guys are really turning into a regular Uncle Traveling Matt… Gobo would be proud…

If I ever travel to Romania, I’ll reference your blog as a “must read”… So, you thought of being a contributor to the Lonely Planet publications yet?

PS- I think Matt Hughes will fight Matt Serra and retire… his last two fights have been less than stellar….and rumors are circulating of a GSP v. Anderson Silva fight this winter… pray your boy’s face remains intact…

16 06 2008
dimeji

doing great guys!

Still up for Nigeria in September???

Don’t chicken out on me now. Meet u there?

D

ps. miss u friends. wish we spent more time together in charlotte

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