We’re home, finally. Summer saw us heading to London and staying rather longer than expected. It was wonderful, but it feels good to be back safe in our little village for autumn. This year is colder than last, there is pure, clean snow low on the mountains, a lot of snow, and our first frost and sub zero night came early in October
We came back to be warmly greeted and touched inappropriately by enthusiastic neighbours.
” We welcome you!”
” Multumesc Ileana!”
“You are fat!” called our neighbour as she made inappropriate advances on my larger-than-before thighs. A compliment or affectionate statement, I’d like to think.
All of this, of course, happens in Romanian, a language we continue to pursue.
The village is much the same, a neighbour’s ancient wooden home has a new traditional wood shingle roof. That’s good to see, too many of the old houses are being replaced by new concrete mansions.
They make the wooden roofing shingles in the village, by hand, it’s amazing to watch them work with such speed and skill to produce thousands of narrow strips of wood exactly as they did centuries ago.
Our neighbours have a lovely new pig, he is Happy Pig‘s replacement and smiles and frolicks in much the same way. I went over and gave him a scratch last night, he grinned appreciatively. Come Christmas we will see and hear him die and be butchered on the grass. We won’t even have to leave our own kitchen to be witness to his death as his screams will alert us to the inevitable event.
We came back to an empty wood shed so this year, instead of asking Penny, I used my improved Romanian to track some down myself. I’m pretty pleased right now, 5 m³ of lemn de foc ( firewood) has just been delivered thanks to a lovely firewood fairy in a headscarf who appeared on our doorstep yesterday afternoon. Word had got around, she had some to sell and it duly arrived by tractor. James and our landlord toiled with chainsaws and axes to reduce it to stove-friendly size. These people are so willing to help. Do you know what an abundance mentality is? Well that’s what they have, a generous spirit, nobody here will watch us struggle and freeze, these are good people, the best. In return we help them as we can. Tomorrow we will drive our elderly neighbours, Ileana and Petru, to the market. We’ve been promised a dish of Ileana’s home made sarmale in return. That’s a treat not to turn down.
Our fire wood delivery.
With chainsaws and axes they cut, split and stacked. As rain began to fall the boys and I dropped our work and rushed outside to pile split logs under protective barn eaves before the icy drops soaked in. I feel rich indeed to have so much wood for the freezing winter ahead.
We love being here. The simplicity of life, the good people, the good food and the connection with this stunning landscape bring us peace and happiness. We’ve never regretted our decision to base ourselves here but now, post Brexit, who knows what will happen? It seems the house project is probably off, it’s been over 12 months since we signed the contract and still there is no progress. But we shall see. It really doesn’t matter, just being here is enough.
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